【 RNI-HIN/2013/51580 】
【 RNI-MPHIN/2009/31101 】
04 Dec 2022
Indore: Four persons, including the principal of a government-run law college in Indore, the author, and the publisher of a book, were booked on Saturday for allegedly promoting enmity between different groups and hurting religious feelings. The FIR was registered following a complaint filed by a student of the Government New Law College of Indore, a member of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), who alleged that the book Collective Violence and Criminal Justice System contained objectionable content against the Hindu community and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), and encouraged religious fundamentalism.
The issue erupted on Thursday when ABVP activists went on a rampage claiming some teachers of the institute were promoting religious fanaticism among the new students and propagating negative views about the Union Government and the Army.
ABVP’s college unit president Dipendra Singh Thakur said Farhat Khan’s book contains “very objectionable content against Hindu community, RSS, Vishwa Hindu Parishad, Bajrang Dal, and Durga Vahini”.
The ABVP further objected to keeping the book — authored by Dr. Farhat Khan and published by Amar Law Publication — in the college library, forcing heavy deployment in the campus.
The book was removed from the library by the college management. Soon after the controversy, the college’s principal Dr. Inam Ur Rahman said that he had removed six professors from academic work for five days and decided to take the help of a retired district court judge to investigate the allegations.
The matter, however, continued to escalate and by Saturday, Mr. Rahman had tendered his resignation.
In a related development on Saturday, State Home Minister Narottam Mishra directed Indore’s Commissioner of Police Harinarayan Chari Mishra to register a case after conducting an investigation in 24 hours into the contents of the book.
“An FIR has been registered against Dr. Farhat Khan, author of the book titled Collective Violence and Criminal Justice System, Amar Law Publication, principal of the institute Dr. Inam Ur Rahman, and professor Mirza Mojiz Baig. Further probe is on,” Mr. Mishra said.
The accused have been booked under sections 153-A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence), 295-A (Deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs) and other provisions of the Indian Penal Code. Mr. Mishra added that these are bailable offences. It is learnt that the education department has initiated a separate inquiry to look into administrative lapses, if any.
Hitesh Khetrapal of Amar Law Publications, the Indore-based publisher of the book, said that the first edition of this book was published in the year 2015. “When we came to know about its controversial parts in 2021, we discussed it with its author Dr Farhat Khan and got the related pages of the book changed,” he said.
According to Mr. Khetrapal, the book’s author has already submitted a letter of apology regarding the disputed portions of her book.
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