Gujarat judge cites Article 19 of the Constitution -- fundamental right of freedom of expression -- to scrap suit demanding a ban on the book
Ahmedabad: A court in Gujarat yesterday dismissed a suit seeking a ban on the sale of a Gujarati book in which author Jayesh Shah, a Congress leader, has allegedly mocked Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The court held that banning the book would violate the right of freedom of expression.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi
Civil court judge AM Dave cited Article 19 of the Constitution and dismissed the suit on Monday, holding that banning the book, titled ‘Fekuji Have Dilli Ma’ (Fekuji is in Delhi now), would violate the fundamental right of freedom of expression.
The book dwells on a list of promises made by Modi during his campaign for 2014 Lok Sabha polls and claims that he has failed to deliver on them. The suit demanding ban on the book was filed by a social worker Narsinh Solanki, who contended that the book is meant to ‘defame’ Modi.
Solanki alleged that the contents and the title of the book are defamatory and derogatory in nature and they would spoil the image of the Prime Minister. According to him, Mode came to power just two years back, a time frame too short to fulfil all the promises he made during the poll campaign. He also sought the court’s intervention to put an immediate ban on the sale of the book, which is in the market since last few months.
However, unconvinced with Solanki’s arguments, the judge said that India is a democracy and people have all the right to express their personal views through a book.
BJP criticises BJD
Sharpening its attack on the Naveen Patnaik government over attack on the convoy of two Union Ministers at Bargarh allegedly by BJD workers, BJP yesterday staged state-wide demonstrations accusing it of failing to take action against culprits. Amid slogan shouting, BJP workers held demonstrations in all the blocks of the state alleging that the attack on the convoy of Union Ministers Santosh Gangwar and Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti on June 24 was ‘pre-planned’ and it was perpetrated at the ‘behest of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’.
BJP President Amit Shah yesterday blamed late prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru of committing a ‘historic blunder’ on Kashmir and also criticised the then Congress leadership for the partition. Referring to the declaration of truce when Pakistan-backed tribal raiders in 1948 were being repulsed in Kashmir, he said if such a decision was not made, the Jammu and Kashmir problem would not have existed today.