The FIR was registered based on a complaint filed by one police inspector in Bengaluru.

Activist Aakar Patel booked for tweet calling for US like protests in India
news FIR Friday, June 05, 2020 - 14:15

Aakar Patel, activist, journalist and the former head of Amnesty International India, has been booked by Bengaluru police for a tweet calling for protests, similar to those being held in the US over the murder of George Floyd, in India as well. 

TNM has accessed the copy of the first information report (FIR) registered on May 31 by JC Nagar Police Station where he has been booked under Sections, 153 (Wantonly giving provocation with intent to cause riot) and 117 (Abetting commission of offence by the public or by more than ten persons) and 505 (1)B of the Indian Penal Code. Section 505 (1) (B) deals with statements conducting public mischief with intent to cause, or which is likely to cause, fear or alarm to the public, or to any section of the public whereby any person may be induced to commit an offence against the State or against the public tranquillity.

The FIR was registered based on a complaint filed by a police inspector, Nagaraj.

In the said tweet, Aakar had tweeted a US media report of the protests in Colorado, USA, saying, “We need protests like these. From Dalits and Muslims and Adivasis. And the poor. And women. World will notice. Protest is a craft (sic).”

Speaking about this, Aakar Patel told TNM, “I don’t think they can make an offence out of the tweet. I came to know about the FIR from the news reports, the police have not contacted me.”

Reacting to the development, Amnesty India has issued a statement. 

In the statement, the Executive Director of Amnesty International India, Avinash Kumar said, "The FIR filed by the Bengaluru police against Aakar Patel is just another example of how the right to dissent is being increasingly criminalised in the country.” 

He added, “The Bengaluru police must stop abusing its authority and put an end to the intimidation and harassment of Aakar Patel for exercising his constitutionally guaranteed right to freedom of expression. People of this country have the right to agree or disagree with those in power, and to express these opinions in peaceful protests - without fear or unlawful interference. Peacefully protesting against the government is not a crime. Not agreeing with the policies of those in power does not make you a traitor either.”

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