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Supreme Court Gave Bail to BJP Youth Leader Priyanka Sharma

Author : Odisha Today Bureau | Posted on: 2019-05-14

A vacation bench of the Supreme Court on Tuesday granted bail to BJP activist Priyanka Sharma without a written apology, who was arrested for allegedly sharing a morphed photo of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on social media.

 

West Bengal Police on 10 May said Sharma was arrested for uploading and sharing the morphed picture of the CM which had her face photoshopped on Bollywood actress Priyanka Chopra’s Met Gala look.


Priyanka Sharma (left image) and morphed picture of Mamta Banerjee (Right image)

 

Sharma, a BJP Yuva Morcha leader, was arrested after a complaint against her was lodged in Dasnagar Police station.

 

A two-judge vacation bench comprising justices Indira Banerjee and Sanjiv Khanna was hearing the plea, which was filed by Sharma’s advocate NK Kaul with a request for an urgent hearing.

 

Earlier, the court had observed that Sharma will be granted conditional bail on tendering a written apology.

 

"She is a member of the political party. Elections are going on. At this stage, we are not on the aspect of criminal law. We are asking for an apology because it is election time," the Supreme Court bench said.

 

The Supreme Court added that freedom of expression can't be allowed to violate someone's right. "Someone's feelings have been hurt. There has to be an apology," the Supreme Court said.

 

Sharma’s counsel NK Kaul, however, told the apex court that “asking for apology amounts to infringement of right to freedom of speech,” following which the Supreme Court modified its order and waived the apology condition, releasing the BJP activist immediately.

 

Following her arrest, Sharma was sent to two weeks’ judicial custody.

 

BJP supporters and other social media users, including many who do not support the BJP, protested against Sharma’s arrest.

 

This is not the first time that Banerjee took action against someone who took a dig at her. In 2012, Professor Ambikesh Mahapatra of the Jadavpur University was arrested for forwarding a cartoon of the chief minister. In the same year, she had also termed a student "Maoist" for questioning her government`s policies.

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