The bench struck down the Goondas Act stating that the government failed to review the petition given by the petitioner within the given time.

The BJP rally addressed by Kalyanaraman in Coimbatore
news Court Tuesday, June 08, 2021 - 16:39

The Madras High Court on Tuesday struck down the detention of BJP State working committee member Kalyanaraman under the Goondas Act in connection with his comments against the Muslim community and Prophet Mohammed during a BJP Rally in Coimbatore. The Court gave the order while hearing a petition filed by Shanthi, his wife, who pleaded to the court to strike down the Goondas Act.

On Tuesday, the case came up for hearing before the bench of Justices PN Prakash and Pongiappan. During the hearing, the petitioner submitted that her husband was falsely booked under Goondas Act and the Act cannot be invoked for hate speech. She also mentioned that the state government did not review her petition seeking to strike down the Goondas Act within the stipulated time period. Taking a note, the bench struck down the Goondas Act stating that the government failed to review the petition given by the petitioner within the given time.

Former National Secretary of Bharatiya Janata Mazdoor Mahasangh (BJMM) and BJP State working committee member Kalyanaraman was arrested for his hate comment against the Muslim community and his questioning of the manhood of Prophet Mohammed during a BJP rally on January 30. Kalyanaraman was earlier arrested for making a similar statement in 2016.

In the video from BJP rally in Coimbatore, Kalyanaraman quoting his bail order in 2016 said that the judge gave him bail by stating that expressing opinions on religious matters based on an individual's knowledge of the subject will not amount to blasphemy. However, Justice Anand Venkatesh immediately criticized Kalyanaraman for making the statement as though the court had endorsed his view.

Following this, Coimbatore Collector K Rajamani invoked Goondas Act against Kalyanaraman stating that his comments were "prejudicial to the maintenance of public order and public peace".

According to Tamil Nadu Prevention of Dangerous Activities of Bootleggers, Drug-offenders, Forest-offenders, Goondas, Immoral Traffic Offenders, Slum-grabbers and Video Pirates Act, "Goonda" means a person who by himself or as a member of a or as a leader of a gang commits habitual offences or attempts to commits or abets the commission of the offense.  The Act mandates that in every case where a detention order has been made under this Act, the State Government shall, within three weeks from the date of detention of a person under the order, place before the Advisory Board constituted by them under Section 9, the grounds on which the order has been made.

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