Samajwadi MP Shafiqur Rehman Barq charged for sedition over remarks defending Taliban
The MP has been also booked under sections 153A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language) and 295A (deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs), Superintendent of Police Chakresh Mishra said.
Samajwadi party MP Shafiqur Rehman Barq landed in trouble after courting a controversy following his remarks on Taliban. Barq was booked for sedition over his remarks allegedly defending the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan and equating it with India’s own freedom struggle.
The Uttar Pradesh Police booked Sambhal MP after he issued a statement on August 16 hailing Taliban takeover of Afghanistan and comparing their assault on the country with India's freedom struggle.
Superintendent of Police Chakresh Mishra said on Wednesday that he was charged under Indian Penal Code section 124A (sedition) after BJP leader Rajesh Singhal on Tuesday filed a complaint.
Singhal in his complaint stated that Barq’s controversial statement amounts to sedition, the officer said.
The MP has been also booked under sections 153A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language) and 295A (deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs), Mishra said.
Along Barq, two others – Mohammad Muqueem and Chaudhary Faizan, have also been booked under these sections, the officer said, adding that the matter is under investigation.
Following the Sambhal MP’s remarks, Samajwadi Party (SP) workers Muqueem and Faizan posted material on social media in support of the Taliban, according to the FIR.
Responding to questions from reporters, Lok Sabha member Barq had stated that the Taliban wanted to free their country and it was Afghanistan’s internal matter.
He had called the Taliban a force that did not allow Russia or the United States to establish themselves in Afghanistan, “and now they want to run their own country”.
Comparing when India was under British Rule, the MP had said that the entire country fought for independence.
“They want to be free. This is their personal matter. How can we interfere?” the SP legislator had said on developments in Afghanistan.
Barq had said that the Afghans want to “run their own country in the manner they wanted,” endorsing the Taliban takeover.
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath sharply criticised the remarks.
In the state legislative council, the Chief Minister on Tuesday slammed the opposition MP.
He was shamelessly supporting the Taliban. It means supporting their barbaric act. We are a parliamentary democracy. Where are we heading? We are supporting people who are a blot on humanity, the CM added.
(With inputs from agency)
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