Facebook arrests: Bombay High Court transfers judge

Facebook arrests: Bombay High Court transfers judge
Mumbai The Bombay High Court has transferred the judge who sent two girls to judicial custody last week, and granted them bail on a bond of Rs 15,000 each last week. The girls had been arrested for their Facebook posts against the Mumbai 'bandh' - a day after Bal Thackeray died.

First class judicial magistrate Ramchandra Bagade has been transferred to Jalgaon from Palghar with immediate effect. This comes coincidentally a week after Mr Bagade ruled in the facebook arrests case.

An enquiry report on the arrest of two girls for their Facebook comments against the Mumbai shutdown called by Shiv Sena has indicted the policemen for initiating action and observed that the arrests could have been avoided.

The confidential report filed by Inspector General (Konkan Range) Sukhvindar Singh also mentions that sections applied in the case were not justified and also recommended departmental action against the concerned cops.

Maharashtra Home minister RR Patil is expected to outline today the action by his government taken on the basis of the report. The Additional Chief Secretary (Home), Umesh Sarangi, told NDTV that he has recommended "strict action."

The girls from Palghar, both aged 21, were arrested last Monday after one of them posted a Facebook status protesting the Mumbai shutdown after Bal Thackeray's death and the other one 'liked' it. The girls were later released on bail.

They were arrested under Section 295 (A) (deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings or any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs) and Section 505(2) (statements creating or promoting enmity, hatred or ill-will between classes) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and the IT Act.

A clinic owned by one of the victim's uncle was also ransacked by a group of alleged Shiv Sena workers. Ten people were arrested for the attack, but released on a bail of Rs. 7,500 each as surety.
(with inputs from PTI)
Story First Published: November 27, 2012 10:44 IST

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