Author Arundhati Roy is facing a criminal complaint for a comment made by her in her speech on National People’s Registry (NPR) and National Registry of Citizens (NRC) during a protest.

Author Arundhati Roy is facing criminal charges after she had a police complaint filed against her as reported on 27th December 2019. The award-winning author was booked for a comment she made during her “controversial” speech at the University of Delhi (DU) regarding the NPR-NRC. The complaint was lodged in Delhi’s Tilak Marg police station by advocate Rajiv Kumar Ranjan, who has demanded that an FIR be registered against her.

The FIR against the author has been requested under Sections 295A- deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings or any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs; 504-intentionally insulting, and thereby gives provocation to any person, intending or knowing it to be likely that such provocation will cause him to break the public peace, or to commit any other offence; 153- wantonly giving provocation with intent to cause riot, and 120B- party to criminal conspiracy-of the Indian Penal Code.

The author had urged netizens ‘lie’ during census over NPR, or give ‘fake names and addresses.” The author had told the crowd that the NPR- National Population Register- would serve as a database for the NRC. But what’s even more shocking was that Roy had said that the Modi government shouldn’t be given the remaining four years,” the complaint said, as reported by News18.

 In a controversial comment, Roy said, “But we have to fight them for the next 4 years. Firstly, we should not give them four years, but we must have a plan. When they come to your house asking for your name, you give them some other name — like Ranga Billa, Kung-Fu Kutta, give your address as Seven Race Course road and let’s fix one phone number. But we need multiple subversions. We were not born to face lathis and bullets.”

Uma Bharti, a Bhartiya Janata Party leader, commented, “I ashamed to take the name of such a woman that idolises people like Ranga-Billa. Her views are not only anti-women, anti-humanity, but also shows a very disgusting mentality.”

Roy later clarified on 27th December that was she intended was to “propose civil disobedience with a smile,” and also blamed media houses for misinterpreting her speech. This controversy comes after the ongoing protests against the government’s CAA, NRC, NPR bills.

Feature Image Credits: PTI file

Shreya Juyal

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In another incident of hooliganism on the University campus, miscreants tried to beat up a female faculty member who came to the defence of her students.

On 30th August 2017, two female students complained about constant harassment and gawking they were being subjected to by an outsider, who was coming to the Cluster Innovation Centre’s canteen for the last couple of weeks. After getting a complaint, one of the faculty member confronted the guy and asked him to not to avail canteen services on the grounds of the complaint and the fact that canteen is open only for CIC students, faculty and workers. The accused apologized and left the CIC premises.

Next day, on 1st September, a group of 7-8 people barged in the canteen despite clear restrictions of no outsider entry. When they didn’t leave after over an hour and intimidated the canteen workers, the canteen worker complained to the faculty. The faculty member, who confronted them a day before, asked them to leave again and within minutes the encounter became violent. The miscreants boasted about their authority aggressively and insulted the professor.

The miscreants also tried to beat up a student who tried to record the entire incident on his phone. “They were speaking to the professor very disrespectfully, so I stepped in and told them to tone down. They didn’t stop so I sneakily started recording them. One of the guys noticed and they came after me, started pulling my collar,” says the student who was assaulted by the miscreants. “Later the guys closed the canteen door and threatened the workers to not serve anyone,” says Lalit Bod, a student who was an eye witness to the incident.

The security guards who tried to save the student were also roughed up in the process of protecting the student. The miscreants left the spot after the incident and later returned with canes and lathis and tried to beat up the teacher. They were stopped by the students who were present at the spot and intervened to protect their teacher from getting beaten up. “While I was standing near the lobby, I saw these miscreants coming towards the teacher with lathis. Immediately I and some of my friends rushed towards him and overpowered him. Then we took him away from the teacher”, says Siddharth Nandan, one of the students who intervened to save their teacher. Later all the miscreants fled from the spot.

Delhi Police has taken cognizance of the offence and registered a FIR for the case. “A case has been registered and we are investigating the matter,” said Pradeep Narwal, DCP of North Delhi.

After the incident, the CIC administration has put up a notice banning everyone from the campus after 7 PM. This notice has put many students who used to stay till late evening to work on various projects and assignments at a problem. “We used to watch lectures and use internet facilities for our academic work. Now sadly, we have to suffer for the work of miscreants,” said one of the final-year students who did not wish to be named. “The administration should not restrict the students, it should rather curb the illegal entry of outsiders,” he said.

Meanwhile, teachers and students are hopeful that the administration will take up the issue with police, and ensure that the safety of the students is maintained on the campus. Prof. H.P Singh, the director of the centre, refused to comment on the issue.

Image credits: DU Beat

Srivedant Kar

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Niharika Dabral

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