06:13 GMT12 May 2021
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    New Delhi (Sputnik): A court in the Indian state of Jharkhand has ordered a Hindu girl to distribute the Quran as a punishment for posting a communal message on social media. The 19-year-old girl from Ranchi had shared a post allegedly asking why “only Muslims think of taking revenge and becoming terrorists”.

    Richa Bharati, 19, a first year student at a local college, was arrested on 13 July following a police complaint against her for allegedly sharing a post that allegedly hurt the sentiments of a minority community.

    On Monday, Judge Manish Kumar Singh of the Jharkhand High Court, while granting bail to Bharati, added a rider, mandating her to distribute five copies of the Quran in government-owned educational institutions.

    The young girl had shared a post allegedly asking why “only Muslims think of taking revenge and becoming terrorists”.

    Soon after the order, a widespread protest erupted in different parts of the country, including in the state of Jharkhand, which has a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government.

    "SHOCKING. Hindu woman ordered to distribute Quran as a condition for her bail. She refused. BRAVO. Imagine if a Muslim was ordered to distribute Gita as a condition for bail - our media would have cried SANGHI JUDICIARY for a week", said Anand Ranganathan, author and consulting editor of the news portal Swarajya, while arguing that everyone should stand with the girl, who has refused to follow this unusual order by the court.

    ​Another senior author, Shefali Vaidya, expressed her anger.

    ​"Do courts ask Muslim accused to do Ramayan or Durga paath?" Nupur J. Sharma, editor at OpIndia, asked while questioning the judgement.

    Some Twitter users suggested that Richa file a counter-petition against the judgement.

    ​Political commentator Shehzad Jai Hind asked the court to grant her bail on normal conditions given to everyone else.

    ​​Another senior journalist, Pradeep Bhandhari, extended his support for Richa's decision to oppose the court order, calling it an "infringement on faith". "This is anti-constitutional . Against Article 25", he added.

    ​Nevertheless, some people have supported the judgement, saying that this is in an effort to promote interfaith values.


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