Samajwadi Party MLC Swami Prasad Maurya has been booked over his remark on Ramcharitmanas, an epic Hindu religious book which is based on Ramayana.
The FIR against the Samajwadi Party MLC has been lodged at Hazratganj police station in Lucknow on the basis of a complaint by one Shivendra Mishra.
The case has been registered under Sections 153a, 295A,298, 504 505(2) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
DCP Central Aparna Kaushik said, “On the complaint of Shivendra Mishra, a case has been registered in Hazratganj police station under sections 153a, 295A, 298, 504, 505(2) of IPC.”
Mr Maurya, considered a prominent OBC leader in Uttar Pradesh had on Sunday sought a ban on the work composed by the 16th-century poet-saint Tulsidas alleging that Dalits and women have been “insulted” in Ramcharitmanas.
Speaking to ANI, the SP leader said, “I don’t have any issue with Ramcharitramanas but parts of it have insulting comments and sarcasm directed at particular castes and sects. Those should be removed.”
Mr Maurya further claimed that in the Ramcharitmanas, which was composed by Tulsidas, there are words hurting the sentiments of the Dalit community.
“The government should take effective action and show sensitivity. It should see that the sentiments of any community are not hurt,” he added.
Notably, Mr Maurya left the ruling BJP last year in January and joined the Samajwadi Party (SP), ahead of the Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh.
Meanwhile, Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Akhilesh Yadav is believed to be unhappy with his party colleague Swami Prasad Maurya over his controversial remarks on Ramcharitmanas.
According to sources, Akhilesh Yadav is very angry with Mr Maurya and a press conference can also be held on behalf of the party.
Samajwadi Party has distanced itself from the remarks of party leader and former Uttar Pradesh minister Swami Prasad Maurya, who stated that certain verses of the Ramcharitmanas promoted social discrimination and spread hatred.
SP veteran Ravidas Mehrotra has said that Mr Maurya’s remarks were made out of “ignorance” and is not the party’s line and the Samajwadi Party respected all religious texts and religions.
“It is personal views and has nothing to do with the party. This statement by Maurya has been given just out of ignorance. He has no knowledge that the verse of Ramcharitmanas, he was referring, has a different meaning,” Mr Mehrotra said talking to ANI.
Several party MLAs have also decided to distance themselves from Maurya’s statement and raised the matter with the party chief over the phone.
Earlier this month, Bihar Education Minister Chadra Shekhar triggered a row with his statement that the Ramcharitmanas is divisive and spreads hatred in society.
The remarks stirred outrage among Hindu religious leaders and the BJP, which demanded his dismissal from the government.
While addressing the students at the 15th convocation ceremony of Nalanda Open University, Chandra Shekhar described Ramcharitmanas and Manusmriti as books that divide society.
“Why was the Manusmriti burnt? It is because it has insulting remarks against a large section of the society. Why was Ramcharitmanas resisted? It is because it speaks against the right of the lower caste people to access education. It says lower caste people turn poisonous if they receive education, just as a snake becomes venomous after drinking milk,” the minister said.
“Manusmriti, Ramcharitmanas, Bunch of Thoughts by Guru Golwalkar… these books are books that spread hatred. Hatred will not make the country great, love will make the country great,” he added.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)