The Bombay High Court on Tuesday asked what action had the police taken on a complaint against Police Inspector Sujata Patil’s ‘offensive’ poem, which was published in the police journal Samvad.
The poem titled Azad Maidan written by Patil following the Azad Maidan riots last year had been published in Samvad and referred to the rioters at Azad Maidan as ‘snakes’ who dishonoured women, referring to the molestation of women officials by the rioters.
The division bench of Justices AS Oka and AP Bhangale were hearing a petition filed by Ameen Idrisi, an activist who runs the NGO Islam-e-Hind, and Nazar Mohammed Siddique, one of the men injured in the riots — purportedly by police bullets.
Apart from Patil, the petition names the commissioner of police and Joint CP (Administration) Hemant Nagrale, who is also the magazine’s editor-in-chief as respondents. The petitioner has sought the registration of FIR against Patil. The prosecution told the court that the publication had apologised for the poem in a subsequent edition. Patil’s poem, which sparked controversy, called for the rioters’ hands to be chopped off for daring to touch the Amar Jawan memorial. The poem went on to imply that all the protesters ought to have been felled by a rain of bullets.
Last week, Patil, who is with the Matunga Traffic police, told the press that she was ready to apologise for writing the poem, but did not regret writing it. A complaint was made by the petitioners, seeking the invocation of various sections of the IPC dealing with hurting religious sentiments against Patil and Nagrale, as well as the commissioner. The court has now adjourned the matter till February 8.