Monday, April 16, 2007

Judgment of PCI

Sl No. 2 File No. 14/151/01-02-PCI

Shri A.K. Acharya, The Editor,
Additional Secretary (Home), Vs Mujahana, Fortnightly Magazine,
Government of NCT of Delhi, Delhi


The complaint dated 25-5-2001 was filed by Shri A.K. Acharya, Additional Secretary (Home), Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi against The Editor, ‘Mujahana’, Fortnightly Magazine, for publication of objectionable material actionable under section 153A, 153B, 292-A and 505(2) of the Indian Penal Code in its issue dated 1-15 June, 2000.
It was inter alia published in the impugned news article, “The Aryans did not accept Jesus their king and waged war since 1857. So these missionaries are here to slay, eat flesh and drink blood of Aryans' under protection of the RSS & Atal Govt.
“Hence these missionaries are drinking Aryans' blood. They slew, burnt alive and hounded out the Riyangs of Mizoram. They are running parallel Government of NSCN in Nagaland. Aryans' Bharat, lives, Vadic culture and ladies are in jeopardy due to these notorious humbugs. They must vacate Bharat. Aryavart won't let them stay here.
“Islam and Christianity support subjugation, plunder and slaughter of Aryans, which are the basic requirements of UOI.
“A Christian or a Muslim can be a good and honest person. But definitely their religions are bandits. Aryans are morally, constitutionally and legally right in eliminating these criminal religions.”
The complainant submitted that the respondent magazine which published the impugned article/material was promoting enmity between classes, and maliciously insulting the religions or the religious beliefs of the people. The complainant further submitted that the Government of NCT of Delhi has issued a show cause notice dated 4-12-2000 to the respondent editor for violation of the provisions of sections 153A, 153B, 292-A and 505(2) of the Indian Penal Code, who did not care to respond despite reminders. The complainant requested the council to take appropriate action against the respondent.

Written Statement

Show cause notice was issued to the respondent – editor, Mujahana, on 25-06-2001. Since the notice was received back undelivered, it was served through the ‘process serving agency’.
In his written statement received on 05-09-2001, the respondent launched a tirade against religions other than Hinduism and the failure of democratic government on all fronts. The respondent further submitted that Shri Shri A.K. Acharya and the Lt. Governor were aiding and abetting the Muslims in their slaughter, plunder and rape of women. These criminals were above law. When ISI agent Abdullah Bukhari, he stated, dared to arrest him, they did not take action against him. When Ahmad Bukhari, the current Imam, burnt the Indian Constitution and national flag, they did not take action against him, in as much as the Police did not arrest him and merely filed complaint against him in court. The Lt. Governor was then pleased to request the Metropolitan Magistrate Mr. Sharma to recall the charge against him. When the MM refused to do so, he was transferred. Not only this, when Abdullah Bukhari constructed Wazukhana on DDA land, the Delhi Police did not arrest him nor he appeared in the court of the MM Tishazari, Rohilla in spite of several warrants. Ultimately the “criminals”, Home secretary and LG, recalled the charge against Abdullah Bukhari.
The respondent submitted that “While, the criminal Law Deptt of Government and the gang of criminal screening committee” found his quotations “from the Koran and the Bible commissions of crimes, attracting sections 153A, 153B, 295A and 502(2) of the Indian Penal Code, these guides of criminals named Koran and Bible remained immune and sacred cow from any action.” He further submitted that when he objected for not taking action against ISI agent Abdullah Bukhari, he was sent to jail by “the very vicious home deptt. of NTC of Delhi” vide FIR 10/2001. and when he objected to Azan and Namaz, he was again sent to the jail by same department Of the NTC Delhi, vide FIR 110/2001.
A copy of the written statement was forwarded to the complainant on 21.09.2001 for information.

Appearance before the Inquiry Committee

The matter was called out for hearing before the Inquiry Committee at Delhi on 04-12-2001. Shri Mukesh Prasad, Deputy Secretary appeared for the complainant Delhi government while Shri Ayodhya Prasad, editor, Mujahana appeared in person.

Hearing before the Committee

The complainant stated before the Committee that the article published by the respondent was likely to incite passion and hatred in society. It could also affect the public peace. The Government wanted to take legal action against the editor and had issued a show cause notice to the respondent on 04.12.2000, but as the editor has not responded, the government had decided to approach the Press Council.
The respondent-editor stated that the impugned publication could have been objected to by a Mufti, a Priest or an Imam. There was not a single allegation against the newspaper from these persons. No demonstration had been held before his newspaper’s office after publication of the impugned article. He failed to understand as to how the Government had come forward with the complaint. He argued that there was nothing objectionable in the impugned publication. He stated that he had been entangled in two false cases and had been in jail. He had come out of jail on 17-04-2001 and had replied to the State Government on 19-04-2001. The complainant had wrongly claimed that they had not received reply to the show cause notice.

Recommendation of the Inquiry Committee

The committee, on consideration of the material on record and oral argument of the parties, noted that on publication of the alleged objectionable material by the editor in ‘Mujahana’ fortnightly in its issue 1-15 June, 2000, the complainant State Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi had issued a show-cause notice to the respondent editor on 4.12,2000 for action under the Indian Penal Code. The complainant had contended that the respondent did not respond to the said show-cause notice. The complainant had also stated that in a meeting the State Government had decided to initiate legal action against the respondent editor for publication of objectionable material, but on non-receipt of reply they had referred the complaint to the Press Council of India. The Committee further noted that the respondent had submitted his reply dated April 19, the said show-cause notice to the Government, a copy of which had also been given to the Council. In the circumstances, the Committee directed the complainant-Government, through its representative, to go through the reply of the respondent to the show cause notice and decide the future action in accordance with law. With the above directions to the complainant, the Committee recommended to the Council to drop further proceedings in the matter.

Decision of the Council

The Press Council on consideration of the records of the case and the report of the Inquiry Committee, accept the reasons, findings and recommendations of the Inquiry Committee and decides accordingly.
Authenticated / Signature Seal/ (K. Jayachandra Reddy)/ Chairman/ PRESS COUNCIL OF INDIA.
‘NJ’ 25/2/02

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