01:29 GMT18 January 2021
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    New Delhi (Sputnik): India’s federal Election Commission earlier ordered the removal of a junior minister in Narendra Modi’s ministry and a ruling BJP lawmaker from the list of star campaigners for the February legislative assembly elections in the national capital for what has widely been perceived as hate speech during campaigning.

    Police in the Indian national capital earlier probed the alleged hate speeches of junior finance minister in the federal ministry, Anurag Thakur and ruling BJP lawmaker Parvesh Varma on a complaint by the leaders of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) Brinda Karat and K.M. Tewari. 

    The Delhi Police on Wednesday told a city court that no cognizable offence was committed by Thakur and Verma in the hate speech case

    “Prima facie no cognizable was found to be committed. The incidents of violence are independent acts which did not have any connection to speeches mentioned in the complaint", said the report submitted by Delhi Police on Wednesday.

    The plaintiffs had sought registration of a case against both the leaders as their speeches during election campaigns had incited violence at the venue of protests against the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) in Delhi. The chants of "shoot the traitors" during a pre-campaign rally by Thakur had sparked a massive controversy.

    The absolution by Delhi Police for Thakur and Verma has angered social media users who were already outraged over the raging incidents of communal violence in the national capital over CAA. At least 20 people have died and around 200 have been injured in the ongoing clashes.

    Anurag Thakur, the junior Minister of Finance, came under fire after a video of him chanting "Desh K Gadaaro ko, Goli Maaro Saalon Ko” (Shoot the traitors) went viral on social media.

    Parvesh Varma, BJP parliamentarian from Delhi, had warned people that the anti-citizenship law protesters at Shaheen Bagh would enter their homes “to rape and kill women just like what happened in Kashmir with Hindus”.

    Since the enactment of CAA by the federal government, the country has witnessed widespread protests across the country. The law grants citizenship rights to "persecuted minorities" from three neighbouring Islamic countries - Afghanistan, Bangladesh, and Pakistan that immigrated to India prior to 2015.

    The opponents of the law feel it is discriminatory on religious grounds and against the secular credentials of the Indian Constitution. However, the federal government has denied these charges. 


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