The Bombay High Court witnessed high drama over a petition filed in protest of the anti-Islam film ‘Innocence of Muslims’.
A division bench of justices SA Bobde and RG Ketkar were hearing a petition filed by Ameen Idrisi, an activist, protesting against the film’s presence on the Internet.
Chief Public Prosecutor Revati Mohite-Dere informed the court that an advocate, Zulfiqar Memon had already registered an FIR with the Mumbai Police’s Cyber Cell, and that was currently being investigated.
“So far, we sent notices to 10 websites of which seven took the film down. After that the lawyer approached the Magistrate’s court, and after a notice from that court one more website deleted the film.
Only two sites are left which currently show the film, and letter rogatories have been issued for the same,” Dere told the court.
The petitioner’s lawyer Ejaz Naqvi whipped out a smart phone to show the court that the video was readily available everywhere. “I am the petitioner… the court should hear me. The state is lying,” he said.
The court later reprimanded Naqvi for his conduct, as he had flashed his mobile phone at the bench to display the video clip.
Naqvi has made several executives of Google — along with the directors of the film — respondents in his petition. Naqvi informed the court that the film had made a mockery of the petitioner’s religion, which had prompted him to seek legal recourse.
Naqvi also informed the court that offences under section 298 (Uttering, words, etc., with deliberate intent to wound the religious feelings of any person) and 295A (Deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings or any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs) were made out.
The court issued notice to the State to place on record what action is being taken by them to ensure videos of the film ‘Innocence of Muslims’ were being taken offline in India. The court placed the matter for further hearing on October 10.