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Karnataka Election 2023: BJP Minister Munirathna Booked for ‘Hate Speech’

This is not the first controversy of the film producer-turned-politician.

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Karnataka Police registered a First Information Report (FIR) against state Minister Munirathna Naidu for his alleged hate speech against the Christian community.

The complaint: The case was registered against the Minister for Horticulture after a complaint by a gazetted Election Commission (EC) officer who charged him with promoting enmity among people.

What the minister said: In an interview to a news channel on 31 March, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) minister, had said, "Christians are converting people at this moment also. Conversion is maximum in the slums. In places where 1,400 people are there, 400 have been converted. If they come (for conversion) then hit them and send them back."

Charges: The Rajarajeshwari Nagar police booked the film producer-turned-politician from RR Nagar under Section 117 (abetting Commission of offence), 153A (promoting enmity between various groups or religion) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and 125 of People's Representation Act (Promoting enmity between classes in connection with election). 

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Not the first controversy: Just last Friday, 31 March, Bangalore Rural Congress MP DK Suresh had urged the police to arrest Munirathna while as the party’s Rajarajeshwari Nagar candidate Kusuma Hanumantharayappa filed a police complaint accusing the BJP leader of “inciting hatred” between Kannadigas and Tamils.

In a purported video, the minister was seen urging locals in his constituency in Tamil to "attack anyone" who sets foot there and that he will "protect them."

He later clarified saying that he was only asking people to not entertain those who have not helped in the past many years.

Not just that, to propagate the claim that two Vokkaliga chieftains (Uri and Nanje Gowda), and not the British, killed Tipu Sultan, his studio Vrushabhadri Productions had reportedly applied, with the Karnataka Film Chambers of Commerce, to register the movie title ‘Uri Gowda Nanje Gowda.'

The claim has been rubbished by historians. Read about it here.

It was only after meeting prominent Vokkaliga seer Nirmalananda Swamy at the Adichunchanagiri mutt in Mandya, that the minister withdrew the project.

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