Historian held for `derogatory' remarks against Hindu gods

EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE
http://www.indian-express.com/ie/daily/20000720/ina20007.html
20th July 2000

NAGPUR, JULY 19: A Nagpur-based historian and an activist of Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), M M Deshmukh, was arrested from his Nagpur residence on Monday by Umari police of Nanded district for allegedly making derogatory remarks against Hindu mythological god Brahmadev and goddess Swaraswati.

According to reports, Deshmukh had delivered a public speech on April 23 at Umari on the occasion of the birth anniversary of Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar and allegedly made derogatory remarks against the Hindu god and goddess.

One Sanjay Kulkarni, a resident of Umari, lodged a complaint with the police in this connection and subsequently the police registered a case under Section of 295 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). While lodging the complaint, Kulkarni said that the sentiments of the Brahmin community were hurt due to the remarks of Deshmukh, and sought a stern action against him.

Meanwhile, several organisations in the city condemned the arrest of Deshmukh and demanded that the police case against him be withdrawn immediately. The organisations which have taken a strong exception to the arrest of the historian include: Maratha Seva Sangh, Kunbi Yuva Samaj, Bahujan Samaj Party, BAMCEF, Jijau Brigade and Sambhaji Brigade.

Besides, several individuals also condemned the police action and urged the Vilasrao Deshmukh Government to intervene in the matter immediately. Prominent persons who condemned the arrest of Deshmukh include: former legislator Vinod Gudadhe-Patil, Prabhakar Pawde, Sanjay Pannase, Ramesh Thakre, Nitin Salve, Ravi Chavan and Ashok Saraswati.

It could not be immediately ascertained if Deshmukh was released on bail or not.


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