TV serial row

SC refuses to cancel FIR for hurting Valmikis’ sentiments

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court today refused to quash an FIR registered by the Jalandhar police in 2009 against a TV serial producer for allegedly hurting sentiments of the Valmiki community.

editorial@tribune.com

Legal Correspondent

New Delhi, August 23

The Supreme Court today refused to quash an FIR registered by the Jalandhar police in 2009 against a TV serial producer for allegedly hurting sentiments of the Valmiki community.

A Bench comprising Justices Gopala Gowda and AK Goel dismissed the appeal by “Bidaai” serial producer Rajan Shahi challenging a Punjab and Haryana High Court’s order in July 2013. The HC had also rejected his plea for quashing the FIR and asked him to prove his innocence in the trial court.

Earlier, the TV channel that telecast the serial had approached the apex court, but withdrew its appeal subsequently, pleading it would first approach an appropriate forum and come back if necessary.

Appearing for the Valmiki Samaj, advocate VK Biju pleaded against quashing the FIR as the accused should come clean in the trial court, instead of shying away from standing trial.

Shahi’s senior counsel HP Raval had contended that his client had in fact praised saint Valmiki and this was clear from the overall context of the dialogue and the scene in question. The FIR was the result of a misunderstanding arising from an out-of-context interpretation of the dialogue.

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