LUCKNOW/KOLKATA: An FIR has been lodged against controversial Bangladeshi writer Taslima Nasreen for allegedly hurting religious sentiments following a complaint by a prominent Muslim cleric of Uttar Pradesh, a charge which the author said shocked her.
The case was lodged at Kotwali police station by Hasan Raza Khan Noori Miyan, son of the “sajjadanasheen” of Dargah-e-Ala Hazrat Maulana Subhan Raza Khan Subhani Miyan, who objected to certain tweets by Nasreen against clerics on November 6, police sources said here on Thursday.
In the complaint, it was alleged that with her remarks against clerics on Twitter the writer had hurt the feelings of the Muslim community.
Noori Miyan said a fatwa has been issued in the light of Hadees and Quran. It was demanded that the passport of the writer should be seized and she should be arrested.
Taslima said she was shocked to hear about the FIR as she had only spoken the truth.
“I do not know what wrong have I done with those tweets. I only spoke the truth and once again they are after me,” Taslima told PTI from New Delhi.
“I am shocked to hear this. How can this happen in a democratic country like India where the Constitution guarantees the freedom of speech and expression,” wondered the 51-year-old author who was forced to flee from Bangladesh after threats from fundamentalists for hurting religious sentiments.
After Arvind Kejriwal sought support for his Aam Aadmi Party from controversial UP cleric Maulana Tauqeer Raza Khan, Taslima had criticised the meeting on Twitter.
In 2007, the Maulana had announced a reward of Rs 5 lakh on the author’s head if New Delhi did not restrict her entry to the country.
Following violent protests over renewal of her visa later on, she was bundled out of Kolkata by the authorities to Delhi.
Noting that her freedom of speech and expression has always been in danger, the author said, “Fundamentalists do not believe in human rights and so I am never allowed to speak even the truth.”
Mr. Hasan Raza Khan Noori Miyan did not at least say that a fatwa was not issued or a price was not set on my head. He said that the fatwa was issued ‘in the light of the Hadith and the Quran’.
Here are some old fatwa-news:
Nobody is allowed to set price on anyone’s head in India. The fatwas are illegal here. It is against the Indian constitution to ask people to kill anyone in the light any damn thing.
But Noori Miyan is angry at me for me being unhappy with their fatwa. He wants me to accept the fatwa gracefully as the fatwas are based on the Hadith and the Quran.
The cleric is wrong if he claims that I am wrong, because I say he is anti-freespeech. Didn’t he already prove that he was anti-freespeech by issuing a fatwa against me in 2007? Am I a criminal because I have told the truth?
They claim I hurt religious feelings of the entire Muslim community. Did I commit a crime or hurt Muslim community by telling the truth about Tauqeer Raza Khan that he was against my free speech, and he issued a fatwa? The cleric set price on my head. I tweeted that the cleric set price on my head. They now claim that my tweet hurts their religious sentiments. Religious sentiments are very dangerous things. These sentiments go against individual freedom and plurality of thoughts — the essential parts of democracy.
The truth only hurts liars and hypocrites. All Muslims in India are not afraid of truth, nor are all of them liars, hypocrites or fundamentalists. Some are. And they always use the name of whole community for their own political interests. Should this trend be continued? Should fatwas continue to be issued, Court cases continue to be filed and FIRs continue to be registered against writers, artists, and women, specially courageous women?
No man has ever been arrested for issuing fatwas against me. Now the UP cops filed the FIR against me for criticizing the fatwa. Tauqeer raza khan, the man who set price on my head is the hero, and me the victim is booked. The world we live in is definitely the world of insane and fanatics.
FN actually said it right: “FIR against Taslima for being alive”.
The case was registered against her under IPC and IT Act provisions, which relate to “deliberate and malicious acts to outrage religious feelings” on the basis of Bareilly cleric Hasan Raza Khan Noori Miyan’s complaint. A conviction under these provisions can lead to up to eight-year imprisonment. Hasan Raza Khan Noori Miyan cited one of her tweets last month in his complaint on Wednesday in which Nasreen described clerics, who go unpunished for issuing antiwomen fatwas, as criminals.
Now my question is which Government has sanctioned to make an allegation of an offence under Section 295A as it can not be made without the previous sanction of the Central Government or of the State Government?