The Supreme Court on Tuesday stayed the arrest of senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor, journalist Rajdeep Sardesai et al. in cases lodged over their alleged “misleading” tweets on Jan 26 tractor rally violence, PTI reported.

Tharoor and Sardesai had last week approached the Supreme Court. FIRs are filed in five states against Tharoor and 6 journalists.

A bench headed by judge S A Bobde issued notices and sought responses from the Centre et al. on the petitions filed by Tharoor, Sardesai and journalists Mrinal Pande, Zafar Agha, Paresh Nath, Vinod K Jose and Anant Nath.

When the bench said it had been issuing notice within the matter, senior lawyer Kapil Sibal, appearing for Tharoor, said that no coercive action be taken against the petitioners within the meantime.

“Nothing goes to happen. Where is that the danger,” said the bench, also comprising Justices A S Bopanna and V Ramasubramanian.

“We will hear you after fortnight and stay the arrest within the meanwhile,” the bench said.

Cases are registered at Gurgaon, Bengaluru and Noida on Thursday. Four similar cases in several districts of Madhya Pradesh earlier. In New Delhi , the case has been transferred to the Crime Branch.

The cases name Tharoor and journalists Rajdeep Sardesai, Mrinal Pande, Zafar Agha, Paresh Nath, Anant Nath, and Vinod K Jose. Most of them invoke IPC sections of sedition, criminal intimidation, promoting enmity, the provocation to interrupt public peace, criminal conspiracy, outraging religious feelings, among others.

The FIR in Delhi was lodged on a complaint of advocate Chiranjiv Kumar, a Central government lawyer at Delhi supreme court .

The complainant stated that the accused spread fake news about protester Navreet Singh’s death in Delhi on January 26 by blaming Delhi Police to “instigate violence”. Navreet Singh died of head injuries when his tractor toppled after hitting a police barricade. The post mortem ruled out any bullet injuries.


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