As many as 262 eminent citizens including former High Court judges and bureaucrats have written to the Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud urging him to take note of Tamil Nadu minister Udhayanidhi Stalin’s hate speech calling for the eradication of ‘Sanatana Dharma’.
They wrote a letter to the CJI stating that the Supreme Court had directed the government and police authorities to take suo motu action in hate speech cases without waiting for the lodging of formal complaints.
“The Supreme Court has expressed concern over the growing incidents of hate speeches in the country and has directed the government and police authorities to take suo motu action in such cases without waiting for the lodging of formal complaints. Such action is needed in order to preserve the secular character of the country. Any delay on the part of the administration in taking action on “very serious issues” will invite the court’s contempt,” the letter stated.
The letter written by various former High Court judges, bureaucrats and veterans said, “Your lordship is aware of the importance of ‘Santana Dharma’ and the same cannot be understated. It is a set of duties incumbent upon all Hindus and has often been defined as an ‘eternal’ that will always be relevant and gives the people of the Hindu faith, the freedom to choose mode of worship of the almighty of their choice.”
“Not only did he make a hate speech but Udhayanidhi Stalin refused to apologise for his remarks. Rather he justified himself by stating, “I will say this continuously” with reference to his remark that ‘Santana Dharma’ should be eradicated. He reiterated that he stands by his remarks and offered ambiguities and nuances that did little to address the concerns raised by people,” it added.
The letter also signed by former Delhi High Court judge, Justice SN Dhingra, said that they are deeply concerned with these remarks made by Udhayanidhi Stalin.
These remarks undeniably amount to hate speech against a large population of India and strike at the very core of the Constitution of India which envisages Bharat as a secular nation, they said.
“Moreover, the rule of law was further undermined when the State government of Tamil Nadu refused to take any action against Udhayanidhi Stalin and rather chose to justify his remarks. The State government of Tamil Nadu’s actions run in the face of the Supreme Court of India’s judgments in the case of Shaheen Abdulla Vs Union of India and Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay Vs Union of India,” the letter stated.
The top court in its order has directed that State governments should take suo moto action against any hate speech crime without waiting for any complaint.
The letter further said, “Thus, cases should be suo moto registered and the offenders should be proceeded against in accordance with law. Any hesitation to act as per the directions would be viewed as contempt of court. Therefore, since the State government has refused to take action and acted in contempt of the Court’s orders and gravely undermined or rather made a mockery of the rule of law, we urge the Supreme Court to take the suo moto notice of contempt, ensuring accountability for the inaction of the State government of Tamil Nadu, and take decisive steps to prevent the inducement of hate speech, preserving public order and peace and we request you to take immediate appropriate actions.”
Remarks of DMK leader Stalin triggered a massive political controversy across the country. (ANI)