Noida Police have booked Congress MP Shashi Tharoor and six journalists, including India Today’s Rajdeep Sardesai, for sedition, among other charges, over the violence during the January 26 farmers’ tractor rally in Delhi.
Besides Sardesai, the journalists include Mrinal Pande, Vinod Jose, Zafar Agha, Paresh Nath and Anant Nath. An unidentified person has also been named in the FIR which was lodged at Sector 20 police station after a resident complained that “digital broadcast” and “social media posts” by them were responsible for the violence.
“Yes, the FIR has been lodged,” a senior Noida Police officer has confirmed.
The FIR has been lodged under Indian Penal Code sections 124A (sedition), 295A (deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs), 504 (intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of the peace), 506 (criminal intimidation), 34 (Acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention), 120B (criminal conspiracy), among others.
They have also been booked under relevant provisions of the Information Technology Act. The Noida Police have begun investigation into the matter, according to officials.
On January 26, thousands of protesting farmers had clashed with police during the tractor rally called by farmer unions to highlight their demand for repeal of the Centre’s three farm laws. Many of them, driving tractors, reached Red Fort and entered the monument. Some even hoisted religious flags on its domes and the flagstaff at the ramparts.
(With inputs from agencies)