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Arrested for 'hate speech', Narsinghanand also booked for assault

NEW DELHI, Jan 17: Saint Yati Narsinghanand, arrested in connection with the hate speeches made at a three-day Dharm Sansad held in Haridwar from December 17, was on Sunday booked in yet another case of assaulting reporters.

“The seer was booked on the basis of a complaint by a Delhi-based journalist, Vineet Khare, who alleged that he and two of his colleagues were assaulted by the seer and his followers during an interview. The journalist also alleged that he and his colleagues were threatened with dire consequences,” inspector Rakendra Kathait, station house officer of Haridwar Kotwali police station, told HT.

The case was registered gainst him under Sections 341 (wrongful restraint), 352 (assault), 506 (criminal intimidation) and 504 (breach of peace) of the Indian Penal Code. The saint also made a complaint with the police against the reporters that he was insulted by them.

Narsinghanand, head of the influential Juna Akhada and also the head priest of the Dasna temple in Ghaziabad, is one of the five against who the 'hate speech' FIR had been registered. The saint is in 14-day judicial custody currently. Jitendra Narayan Tyagi, former Uttar Pradesh Shia Waqf Board chairman, is also in custody.

On a public interest litigation (PIL), the Supreme Court had earlier asked the State Government what action was being taken in the case. The arrest quickly followed the apex court stricture.

The speakers at the Dharm Sansad had allegedly gave calls for armed action against the minority community. The PIL had alleged that open calls for genocide of Muslims were made in the speeches.

Meanwhile, a group of seers is organising 'pratikar yagna' (rite of revenge) all over the country against the police action following the the Dharm Sansad.

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