Filmmaker Aisha Sultana on Monday moved Kerala High Court seeking anticipatory bail in a sedition case filed against her in Lakshadweep.
Police in Kavaratti had on Friday registered an FIR based on a complaint filed by local BJP president C. Abdul Khader Haji and charged Aisha under IPC Sections 124A (sedition) and 153B (assertions against national integration) over her reference to a “bio-weapon” while speaking on the Covid outbreak on the islands during a TV debate.
Later, the 26-year-old filmmaker had clarified that she had meant controversial Lakshadweep administrator Praful Khoda Patel while referring to the “bio-weapon”.
But the BJP’s Haji had in his complaint accused Aisha of describing the Union government as a “bio-weapon”.
In the anticipatory bail plea, she cited imminent arrest as she has been summoned to appear before Kavaratti police on June 20. “The applicant apprehends imminent arrest and detention… for allegedly committing non-bailable offence,” the plea stated.
“The applicant is absolutely innocent of the allegations levelled against her. The applicant has been falsely implicated in this case with ulterior motives and vexatious intentions,” her bail application said.
The plea also pointed out that her remarks did not amount to sedition since there was no call for violence.
“It is further submitted that the offences under Section 153B of the IPC also will not stand against the applicant as the words spoken are not prejudicial to national integration or causing disharmony or feelings of enmity or hatred or ill-will,” the application said.
Aisha on Monday joined the islanders in their Black Day protest to mark the weeklong visit of Patel to Lakshadweep. She posted on Facebook her picture clad in a black dress and a black mask.
“No longer will we, the people of Lakshadweep, tolerate fascism. We will stand against totalitarian policies, and we will survive this siege on Lakshadweep. As long as fascism tries to discriminate, my voice will never abate. Today is a black day for Lakshadweep natives…,” she wrote.