SC Declines to Grant Anticipatory Bail to Man Accused of Posting Objectionable Content on Facebook Against Smriti Irani

The Supreme Court refused to hear a petition filed by a man seeking anticipatory release in an FIR filed by the UP Police over a Facebook post containing allegedly offensive statements about Union Minister Smriti Irani on Friday.

A bench of Justice Sanjat Kishan Kaul and Justice Hemant Gupta expressed reluctance to hear the plea submitted by one Shaharyar Ali, prompting the petitioner to withdraw it.

As a result, the petition was dismissed as withdrawn. The petitioner has been given two weeks to surrender and seek regular bail. He had petitioned the Supreme Court in response to the Allahabad High Court’s order on May 25 to deny his plea for anticipatory bail.

Ramgarh police in Firozabad district lodged an FIR on the basis of a complaint from a BJP member for violations under Section 505 (2) of the Indian Penal Code and Section 67A of the Information Technology Act. It was claimed that his Facebook post about Smriti Irani incited hatred among groups and was vulgar in character.

The petitioner had alleged before the Allahabad High Court that his Facebook account was hacked and that the objectionable stuff was posted without his knowledge. The High Court, however, rejected this claim, noting that he eventually apologised for the post.

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