Sedition charge slapped on Hooda's aide by Haryana police

Hissar: Haryana police on Wednesday booked former Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda's close aide Virender on sedition charges over an audio clip of his conversation in which he allegedly incited violence during the Jat quota agitation.

An FIR has been registered in Rohtak against Virender and Man Singh Dalal, who also allegedly figured in the taped conversation, under various sections of the IPC, including sections 124-A (sedition) and section 120-B (conspiracy), Haryana Police DGP Yashpal Malik told the media in Hissar.

The have also been charged with IPC sections 153-A (promoting enmity between classes) and section 153-B (imputation, assertion prejudicial to national integration), he said.

The FIR against the duo has been registered on a complaint of a Bhiwani resident Pankaj Kumar, DGP said. The DGP said that if other "conspirators" are found, they too will be booked and action will be taken against them as per law for attempts to disturb peace in the state.

Virender, advisor to former chief minister and Congress leader Hooda, had earlier accepted that the voice in the clip was his but alleged that it had been 'doctored'. He has maintained that nowhere had he talked about instigating Jats or anyone. "Moreover, the conversation is an old one, much before the current unrest started," he had said earlier.

Congress had served a show cause notice on the PCC delegate Virender after the audio clip came to light.

Referring to the audio clip, Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar had told reporters in Rohtak yesterday it would be thoroughly investigated.

Leader of Opposition in Haryana Assembly and senior INLD leader Abhay Singh Chautala had said the clip makes it clear how 'attempt' was being made to 'instigate' the protesters "sitting peacefully".

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