A plea has been moved in the Supreme Court by a Chennai resident seeking quashing of case against him in Karnataka for allegedly threatening the Karnataka High Court judges, who delivered the hijab verdict.
The petitioner, Rahamathulla, urged the top court to either quash or transfer the FIR registered against him in Karnataka to Madurai police station in Tamil Nadu, since another FIR in connection with the same issue has already been registered there.
"The petitioner would be put to tremendous hardship and it would be impossible for the petitioner to approach various courts/police stations in two different states in respect of such FIRs".
The plea added that the continuation of investigation in both the FIRs, parallel by two different investigating agencies, would tantamount to abuse of due process.
A bench of Justices Sanjiv Khanna and Bela M. Trivedi sought response from the Tamil Nadu and Karnataka governments on the plea.
"This hon'ble court has in similar circumstances, inasmuch as where multiple FIRs with near identical allegations were lodged against an accused, pleased to quash the subsequent FIRs in Arnab Ranjan Goswami v UOI," said the plea.
The petitioner has been accused of making an inflammatory speech and consequently, an FIR was registered against him in Madurai on March 18, 2022. He was arrested on March 19 and is in custody till date. The second FIR was filed against him at Vidhan Saudha Police Station in Karnataka for offences under various sections.
The petitioner sought a direction from the top court to quash the second FIR in the case. "It is submitted that this Hon'ble Court has taken the view in Satinder Singh Bhasin v. Government (NCT of Delhi) & Othersa..that in cases where there are a group of cases in different States, this Hon'ble Court can exercise jurisdiction under Article 32 of the Constitution and grant necessary relief," added the plea.
The Karnataka High Court held that hijab is not an essential religious practice of Islam and, upheld the power given by the state government to colleges to ban wearing of hijab on the campus.