An Additional Sessions Court in New Delhi granted Kashmiri political activist Shehla Rashid interim protection from arrest in a sedition case on Tuesday (September 10). The next hearing will be held on November 5. Rashid was booked for her social media posts about alleged human rights violations in Jammu and Kashmir.
The FIR filed against Rashid by Supreme Court lawyer Alakh Alok Srivastava was registered under Sections 124A (sedition), 153A (promoting enmity between different groups on ground of religion), 153 (wantonly giving provocation with intention to cause riot), 504 (intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of peace), 505 (spreading rumours) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) for her remarks on the ground situation in J&K in the wake of revocation of Article 370.
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Shehla Rashid had claimed that human rights abuses were being carried out in Kashmir to serve the agenda of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Her allegations drew sharp criticism from the Centre and the Army, which rejected her claims and called them “baseless” and “unverified”.
Rashid’s lawyers – Satish Tamta and Sarim Naved – told Additional Sessions Judge Pawan Kumar Jain that no notice had been issued to the activist yet and the Delhi Police would need six weeks to investigate the complaint. It was also added that Delhi Police had not received any complaint from the Army regarding her tweets.
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In her series of tweets, Rashid claimed that the armed forces were torturing civilians and ransacked houses in Jammu & Kashmir after the abrogation of Article 370 of the Constitution of India.