Lucknow: Varun Gandhi will be tried in Uttar Pradesh for alleged hate speeches made by him in 2009 while campaigning in his constituency of Pilibhit. Mr Gandhi, who belongs to the BJP, won the Lok Sabha election here.
He had been accused by then chief minister Mayawati and her government of promoting enmity between groups on the grounds of religion.
More than a dozen witnesses will testify against him in a court in Pilibhit, which today ordered his trial.
There are two other criminal cases pending against Mr Gandhi, who is 32 years old. While one relates to his speeches made in another part of the state, the other is a case of attempted murder based on violence that followed when he was arrested at the end of March 2009 for about two weeks. As he was being taken to prison, his followers hurled stones at police officials escorting him.
Recently, Mr Gandhi wrote to the Uttar Pradesh government requesting that all three cases be dropped against him in public interest - the government can only withdraw or drop a case if it is in public interest.
In response, the state has sought the opinion of district officials.