Satirical Video Lands Defence Expert Abhijit Iyer-Mitra In Jail, SC Says ‘It Is The Safest Place For You’  
Satirical Video Lands Defence Expert Abhijit Iyer-Mitra In Jail, SC Says ‘It Is The Safest Place For You’  Defence Expert Abhijit Iyer Mitra (Facebook)

Defence expert Abhijit Iyer-Mitra, who is currently facing charges for allegedly making objectionable remarks against the Sun Temple in Odisha in a satirical video, was denied relief from arrest by the Supreme Court (SC) earlier today.

During the hearing in the apex court, Mitra’s advocate argued that his life is in danger, to which the Chief Justice-led bench said, “If your life is in danger, then what better place to stay than jail? Your life will be secure (in jail).”

"Your comments invite religious feelings. How are you entitled to bail?" the bench was quoted by the Times of India as saying.

Earlier, Mitra was arrested on 20 September by the police and granted bail by a court in Delhi. Mitra’s arrest came after legislators of ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) and opposition Congress demanded action against him for what they said were “derogatory remarks” on the 13th-century temple in Konark.

According to his family and friends, Mitra is being targeted by the Naveen Patnaik-led government in Odisha as he is a friend of former BJD leader Baijayant Panda. A former member of parliament, Panda had resigned from the party earlier this year after a bitter falling out with Chief Minister Patnaik.

In September, BJD and Congress workers had burnt effigies of Panda and Mitra in Bhubaneswar during their protest march against the video.

According to reports, a privilege motion was also moved against Mitra in Odisha Assembly over his alleged comments against the members. BJD and Congress MLAs have claimed that his video on the temple, posted on Twitter, offended “religious sensibilities” of the people of the state.

Mitra, a well known columnist, has written for Swarajya. He as also interviewed Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and Member of Parliament (Rajya Sabha) Subramanian Swamy for the magazine.

This is a developing story. More details awaited.

An Appeal...

Dear Reader,

As you are no doubt aware, Swarajya is a media product that is directly dependent on support from its readers in the form of subscriptions. We do not have the muscle and backing of a large media conglomerate nor are we playing for the large advertisement sweep-stake.

Our business model is you and your subscription. And in challenging times like these, we need your support now more than ever.

We deliver over 10 - 15 high quality articles with expert insights and views. From 7AM in the morning to 10PM late night we operate to ensure you, the reader, get to see what is just right.

Becoming a Patron or a subscriber for as little as Rs 1200/year is the best way you can support our efforts.

Become A Patron
Become A Subscriber