BJP MLA Raja Singh
BJP MLA Raja Singh

BJP MLA Raja Singh to walk out of jail after 76 days

BJP MLA Raja Singh was lodged in Cherlapally Central Prison since August 23, after he was arrested under the Preventive Detention Act.

More than 75 days after BJP legislator Raja Singh was arrested under the Preventive Detention Act after his remarks against the Prophet led to widespread protests in Hyderabad, he was released on Wednesday, November 9. The Telangana High Court has ordered his release with certain conditions. Raja Singh was instructed by the court to not release any more derogatory videos on social media and to not address the media after his release on Wednesday. The court has also prohibited him from holding any celebratory rallies or meetings over his release, and specified that only four members of his family and his counsel will be allowed to accompany him when released, his advocate Karuna Sagar told TNM. The order also instructed Raja Singh to refrain from making provocative speeches against any religion, and derogatory or offensive social media posts.  

Soon after the court ordered his release, a tweet from Raja Singh’s account said in Hindi, “Religion (dharma) has won. I am at your service once again. Jai Shri Ram.” Raja Singh had been lodged in Cherlapally Central Prison since August 25. He was arrested for his remarks against Prophet Mohammed, which he made in a video disparaging standup comic Munawar Faruqui after his Hyderabad show. 

After his remarks sparked city-wide protests in Hyderabad, Raja Singh was arrested on August 23. However, he was granted bail on the same day on the grounds that he was not given notice, as stipulated under Section 41(A) of the CrPC. Later, on August 25, the MLA was arrested again, this time under the PD Act. The Telangana government had rejected appeals made by Raja’s wife, Usha Bai, stating that there were “no valid grounds” to revoke the controversial MLA’s detention. 

Days after his initial arrest, the BJP suspended Raja Singh from the party. A total of 101 cases have been filed against the MLA in the last few years, according to Hyderabad police records, out of which 18 are for communal offences. According to the police, Raja Singh has been accused of "habitually delivering provocative and inflammatory speeches" and "driving a wedge between communities leading to public disorder". 

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