DU Professor Arrested over a Tweet on Blasphemy Charges

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Dr. Ratan Lal

The professor teaches history at the Hindu College of the Delhi University (DU). The case was registered against him on the basis of a complaint by a Delhi-based lawyer for his posts on the social media

Team Clarion

NEW DELHI – The Delhi Police, on Friday night, arrested Prof Ratan Lal of the Delhi University under Section 153A/295A of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) over his alleged indecent remarks about the Shivling purported to have been found inside the Gyanvapi Mosque. The arrest came just a day after the case was filed against Prof. Lal.

The professor teaches history at the Hindu College of the Delhi University (DU). The case was registered against him on the basis of a complaint by a Delhi-based lawyer for his posts on the social media.

Prof. Lal claimed he receiving death threats following his post and that he was constantly being trolled on the social media. He had also written a letter to PM Modi demanding tight security.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (North) Sagar Singh Kalsi said, “A complaint was received against Lal on Tuesday night in connection with a deliberately malicious post on Facebook with an intent to insult religion and religious beliefs. Section 153A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc.) and section 295A (promoting enmity between any class of religion or religious beliefs).

Prof.  Lal was summoned by the police for questioning before being arrested.
His arrest sparked instant protests by student groups including the All India Students Association (AISF) whose members gathered outside Maurice police station demanding his immediate release.

DU Professor Apoorvanand Jha took to Twitter to condemn the arrest saying it shows even satire is now a crime. “The arrest of Dr. Ratan Lal again shows that satire or sarcasm is now a crime in India, especially if the person using  it is from a ‘wrong ’community. Others calling directly for murder are seen as saving the ‘ethics’of their community.”

CPIML Liberation also demanded Prof. Lal’s immediate release.

The arrest of Dr. Ratan Lal is clearly part of an ongoing campaign run by the Delhi Police at the behest of the Home Ministry to harass and victimise voices of dissent, said the party in a statement.

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