Top Court to hear Nandy's plea today

Last Updated: Fri, Feb 01, 2013 05:16 hrs

New Delhi: The Supreme Court will on Friday hear sociologist Ashis Nandy's petition seeking protection from arrest for an alleged anti-Dalit remark he made at the Jaipur Literary Festival (JLF).

Nandy has requested the apex court to quash all the FIRs registered against him.

"We are moving the Supreme Court for quashing of the FIR as well as laying down the guidelines in terms of something which constitutes an offence against SC/ST Act and something which is said in 'freedom of speech'," Nandy's lawyer Gaurav Kanth told the media on Thursday.

Kanth informed that there are four FIRs registered against Nandy.

"To our knowledge, I thing there are four of them which have been registered. We don't have the copy of the FIRs, but we know one each is in Jaipur, Jodhpur, Nasik and Raipur and there is something in Patna too," he added.

The lawyer said that his main plea in the apex court is that there was no intent when Nandy had spoken these statements.

"My main plea is because there is no intent when he had spoken these statements and as far as the SC/ST Act is concerned, there is no question of any harm or anything which has been caused to any particular member of SC/ST caste or community. So, we are moving in terms of the fact that nothing really constitutes any criminal or penal action," he added.

To a poser on why the police had not yet questioned Nandy in connection with this case, Kanth said that Nandy was all ready for cooperation in this regard.

"I can't really comment anything on that because I really don't know why they are not coming and questioning him because we were ready for (it) and we are still ready to participate in the investigations. Whatever questions they have, we are ready to answer them," said Kanth.

"We were all ready yesterday also and we are ready today also, but we have not received any intimation from them as to when do they want to come and question him," he added.

Asserting that he has worked for Dalits, OBCs and adivasis for 45 years of his life, Nandy had earlier on Tuesday said that he was ready to go to jail if tried under the Atrocities Act and convicted.

"It is a non-bailable warrant, I am told, under this act. And, if at the age of 75, I am tried under the Atrocities Act and convicted, I will go to jail. I will not contest it. I will go to jail because I have worked for Dalits, OBCs and Adivasis for 45 years of my life, and I am not going to take this insult quietly, in the sense that I will oppose it and try to subvert it. I will go to jail," he said, when asked about his future course of action if issued summons by Rajasthan Police.

Nandy, however, said that he has not received the summons as yet.

"I have only heard that an FIR has been lodged against me. When I get that FIR, when I get that summons I shall respond to that, I shall go there," he added.

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