A non-cognisable offence has been registered against former Congress MP Virji Thummar for allegedly making defamatory remarks against Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a programme in Gujarat’s Amreli district, police said on Monday.
Mr Thummar, however, said his intention was not to hurt anyone but to raise the voice of the public.
Based on a complaint, the Amreli city police have registered a non-cognizable offence against Mr Thummar under sections 499, 500 and 504 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) pertaining to criminal defamation and intentional insult, Deputy Superintendent of Police J P Bhandari said.
As per the complaint filed by Mehul Dhorajiya, general secretary of the BJP’s Amreli district unit, Mr Thummar allegedly made “objectionable” remarks against PM Modi in a programme of the Congress party on December 22, he said.
Mr Dhorajiya lodged the complaint at Amreli city police station on Saturday in connection with Mr Thummar’s comments against the prime minister during ‘Sneh Samvad’, a programme organised by the Congress, Mr Bhandari said.
As the offence is non-cognisable, the police will seek permission from the court to carry out an inquiry against Mr Thummar, he said.
Mr Thummar, on his part, also submitted a complaint before the Amreli city police alleging the BJP was defaming him by burning his effigies, an official said, adding that they were looking into the matter.
Talking to reporters, Mr Thummar said his intention was not to hurt anyone but to raise the voice of the public which, he claimed, the ruling party does not like to hear.
“My intention was not to insult anyone, but the BJP is upset over members of the public showing their anger against the ruling party and is burning my effigy everywhere,” he said.
“Hang me if I have done anything wrong. I am not here to defame anyone, but the ruling party should listen to the public,” said the Congress leader, who also served as MLA in Gujarat from 2017 to 2022.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)