Updated: Jun 29, 2021
Kerala High Court | Social Thikana | Treesa Sunil
The anticipatory bail plea by actress Aisha Sultana regarding the sedition case filed on her for the controversial use of the words “bioweapon” in an interview, was accepted by the Kerala High Court.
Although the actress had rectified later that what she meant was about the controversial Lakshadweep administrator Praful Khoda Patel while referring to the “bio-weapon” and not anything else. The counsel for Lakshadweep administration implied that such terms could invite separatism and misunderstandings in the minds of the islanders.
The court found that there was nothing in her remark which amounted to imputations or assertions prejudicial to the national interest, nor that it propagated any class of persons against another group of persons.
“In the event of her arrest, the applicant shall be released on bail on execution of bond for 50,000 with two solvent sureties each for like amount to the satisfaction of the arresting officer and subject to the conditions under Section 438 (2) Cr.PC,” reads the order.
After she made the controversial remark, the Kavaratti police registered an FIR based on a complaint filed by a local BJP president C. Abdul Khader Haji and charged Aisha under IPC Sections 124A (sedition) and 153B (assertions against national integration). His complaint mentioned that Aisha described the Union Government as “bio-weapon”. She sought pre-arrest bail in the FIR and was granted an interim anticipatory bail for a week to prevent arrest, on conditions to appear as and when necessary for interrogations. And through the week she was questioned by the Kavaratti Police for hours together.
The court also took into account that Aisha was prompt and cooperative with regard to the interrogation while considering the plea. It was also observed that custodial interrogation was not desirable considering the pandemic situation.
While the bail was granted the bench made it clear that this was only an anticipatory bail plea and nothing final as regards the case or it being quashed is decided