2007 Hate Speech: SC stays trial court order directing Azam Khan to give voice sample

 The Supreme Court on Wednesday stayed an order of a trial court directing Samajwadi Party leader Azam Khan to give a voice sample in a case of allegedly delivering a hate speech and using derogatory language against BSP chief Mayawati in 2007.

The voice sample has been sought to match it with Khan’s speech, which was made during a public meeting in Rampur’s Tanda area in 2007 and recorded on a CD.

A bench of justices A S Bopanna and P K Mishra issued notice to the Uttar Pradesh government and the complainant in the case on the plea filed by Khan.

“Issue notice to the respondent. In the meanwhile, there shall be an interim stay of the direction of the trial court order dated October 29, 2022, and upheld by the high court dated July 25, 2023,” the bench said.

Khan has challenged the July 25 order of the Allahabad High Court which disposed of his plea and upheld the order of the trial court in Rampur.

The complaint was registered by one Dheeraj Kumar Sheel against Khan at the Tanda police station under SC/ST Act in 2007, charging him with delivering a hate speech and allegedly using derogatory language against then chief minister Mayawati.

The case was registered in Rampur under the Indian Penal Code sections 504 (intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of the peace) and 171-G (false statement in connection with an election).

The police had also invoked section 125 of the Representation of Peoples Act and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act against Khan.

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