Srinagar, Apr 05: UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has sent a legal notice of defamation to National Conference State Spokesperson Junaid Azim Mattu through Counsel for Government of India, Dr. Abhishek Atrey for “a habit of spreading hate against the Bhartiya Janta Party” and “spreading false stories against Mahant Yogi Adityanath by blaming him that he asked Hindus to rape dead Muslim women”.
The legal notice alleges that Junaid Mattu has made “such statements to cause intentional hatred amongst people towards the Party and the Hon’ble Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, who have formed the present Government, thereby directly inciting hatred against the State Government, hence, seditious in nature”.
“In light of the above facts and circumstances, I request you to forthwith publish an apology in favour of Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) and the Hon’ble Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh Mahant Yogi Adityanath. On failure to do the needful within two weeks of receiving this notice the undersigned will be forced to proceed with the legal action against you”, the legal notice states.
Speaking to reporters and party workers on the issue, National Conference Leader and Spokesperson Junaid Mattu has said that he won’t be deterred by such cowardly acts. “Those who have openly incited violence against Muslims are ironically sending a legal notice to me for defamation. It seems Mahant Yogi Adityanath has mistaken notoriety for reputation. He has used intimidation and harassment as a political weapon in Uttar Pradesh. He has openly threatened Muslims of serious consequences and defamed them. I will respond to this notice legally through my lawyers. They are examining the legal notice and will respond appropriately”, Junaid said.
“BJP is anti-minority and especially an anti-Muslim party and believes in having a selective morality. It encourages hate-speech as it finds it politically expedient and has the audacity to hold others to completely different standards. I am proud of my identity as a Kashmiri and as a Muslim and National Conference is committed to mounting a strong, unapologetic fight against this forces of tyranny, oppression and bigotry. Mahant Yogi Adityanath, his party and his followers should have doubts about this – we are not going to bow down in front of their tyranny”, the NC Spokesperson added.
On being asked about the intent to seek the imposition of the charge of sedition against him, Junaid Mattu said speaking the truth and opposing communalism can’t be sedition. “If standing up to bullies and hate-mongering is ‘seditious’ then one has to be proud of it. I’m not scared of these legal threats – sedition or no sedition. We will respond strongly, unapologetically and legally”, the NC Spokesperson said. (KNS)