Plea in HC for FIR against Gandhis: Cong asks why no FIR against Kapil Mishra and co.

New Delhi, Feb 28 (PTI) The Congress on Friday asked why FIRs had not been filed against BJP leaders like Kapil Mishra for alleged hate speeches after the Delhi High Court sought the Centre's response on pleas seeking cases against Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.

The Congress also said it would give a strong reply in court over the matter.

The Delhi High Court on Friday sought the response of the Centre, the Delhi government and the police on pleas seeking FIRs against political figures, including Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, for allegedly making hate speeches.

Activist Harsh Mander has also filed a petition in the court seeking an FIR against BJP leaders Anurag Thakur, Parvesh Verma and Kapil Mishra for alleged hate speeches by them.

'We will give an extremely strong, comprehensive and straight forward reply, but let me tell you that the whole world is receiving FIRs, but the whole world does not include Kapil Mishra, Anurag Thakur, Pravesh Verma,' Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said at a press conference.

'Not even an FIR now after months and of course after years not an FIR against Giriraj Singh, against Chinmayanand, against Sangeet Som of UP, surely their speeches were very mild, compare to the hate and venom, spewed out by Priyanka Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi,' Singhvi said sarcastically.

When the division bench of the Delhi High Court asks questions, a judge is transferred under a remarkable order, he said.

A row erupted on Thursday over the timing of the transfer of Delhi High Court judge Justice S Muralidhar, who had slammed the police for not registering a case against three BJP leaders for their alleged hate speeches, as the Congress said the 'midnight' notification was 'shameful' and the Centre accused the opposition party of politicising a 'routine' shift.

'I would with the greatest of respect, but in equal firmness caution the courts that they have to follow their own rules. Their own rules for PILs are to first and foremost see the threshold before proceeding to notice...to satisfy themselves that a PIL stands for Public Interest Litigation, not Publicity Interest Litigation, Not Paisa Wasool Litigation, not Private Interest Litigation,' Singhvi said.

'Notice is not automatic and should never be automatic in PILs,' he said.

One of the pleas by a lawyers' group has sought lodging of FIRs against the Congress leaders as well as Delhi's Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, Aam Aadmi Party MLA Amanatullah Khan, AIMIM leader Akbaruddin Owaisi and AIMIM leader Waris Pathan for allegedly making hate speeches.

A bench of Chief Justice D N Patel and Justice C Hari Shankar issued notice to the Centre, the Delhi government and the police on the petition by 'Lawyers Voice' which has also sought setting up of a special investigation team (SIT) to look into the alleged hate speeches.

Asked if the Congress was satisfied with the formation of the SIT, Singhvi said there was no question of being satisfied as the manner in which the police has operated has been condemnable.

'This is the height of discrimination, bias, non-level playing field, which I have never ever seen...not a single FIR except for people opposed to the government, and not a single FIR against the great names of the government -- the Kapil Mishras, the Pravesh Vermas , the Anurag Thakurs, the Sangeet Soms, the Chinmayanands, the Giriraj Singhs,' Singhvi said. PTI ASK SMN