Poster Row: HC Stays Arrest of Twitter CEO, Refuses to Quash FIR

A Right-wing group had moved court against Jack Dorsey for allegedly “hurting sentiments” of the Brahmin community.

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The Rajasthan High Court on Wednesday, 12 December, stayed the arrest of Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey but refused to quash an FIR against him for allegedly defaming the Brahmin community, reported PTI.

The case was filed after a picture emerged of Dorsey holding a poster that said "Smash Brahminical Patriarchy" during his visit to India.

Senior counsels Mahesh Jethmalani and Sandeep Kapur had moved a criminal miscellaneous petition, seeking quashing of the FIR and staying the probe against Dorsey.

Justice PS Bhati rejected the appeal but stayed Dorsey’s arrest, said HM Saraswat, the counsel of petitioner Rajkumar Sharma.

A Right-wing group had moved court against Jack Dorsey for allegedly “hurting sentiments” of the Brahmin community.
The photo showed Jack Dorsey holding the poster.
(Photo Courtesy: Twitter/@annavetticad)

While arguing, Dorsey's counsel told the court there was no such case made out against him as he did not do anything to disseminate hatred against the community, and accord an institutional proportion to hatred, reported PTI.

"The court asked them to submit any document or evidence in support of their arguments in the court," Saraswat said.

On 1 December, a Rajasthan court had directed the police to register an FIR against the Twitter CEO and begin an investigation for allegedly “hurting the sentiments” of the Brahmin community.

A case was then registered against him at the Basni police station in Jodhpur.

The metropolitan magistrate's court in Jodhpur had given these directions while allowing a petition moved by a Right-wing group.

Rajkumar Sharma, Vice President of the Vipra Foundation's youth wing, had moved the petition against Dorsey on 22 November, PTI said.

“Dorsey had posted a picture on his Twitter account, where he is posing with a poster carrying a message: 'Smash Brahmanical Patriarchy,’” the petitioner's counsel had said.

"We had moved this petition under Sections 295A, 500, 120B and other appropriate sections of Indian Penal Code (IPC) for registration of case against Dorsey," Saraswat had said.

(With inputs from PTI.)

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