Yogi scraps a 1995 case against himself!
UP CM Yogi Adityanath adds another feather to his cap. He recently played both accused and the judge! The Yogi-headed UP government has ordered the withdrawal of a 1995 case against him, MoS Finance at Centre Shiv Pratap Shukla, BJP MLA Sheetal Pandey and 11 others. They were booked for holding a meeting despite prohibitory orders in his bastion Gorakhpur. Here's more!
How did the case proceed?
In 1995, a case was filed against Yogi at Pipalganj police station, under IPC section 188 (disobedience to a public servant's order). A local court had ordered a non-bailable warrant against all accused for not appearing before it. In December'17, the UP government asked the Gorakhpur district magistrate (DM) to withdraw the case. Apparently, the DM withdrew it after "verifying" the facts.
Two days after withdrawal, Assembly amends the UP criminal law
This event should be seen in the context of the UP Criminal Law (Composition of Offences and Abatement of Trials) (Amendment) Bill, 2017, which was passed two days after the case's withdrawal. Describing the bill, Yogi announced that government will withdraw 20,000 political cases against people for reasons like demonstrations and sit-ins. He claimed the cases were bogus and done to victimize political opponents.
How did Yogi assuage opposition's fears?
The opposition obviously was bitterly against this legislation. However, Yogi appealed to them saying they should all join hands to make UP peaceful and investor-friendly. He asserted that crime will be dealt with firmly. Further, he reasoned that this law is "must to break the backbone of organized crime, which has thrived with the support of politicians and officials."
Meanwhile, this isn't the first time Yogi escaped prosecution
Meanwhile, Yogi is gradually becoming an expert at dodging the law. Earlier, in a 2008 hate speech case, the UP government refused to grant sanction to prosecute Yogi and some others for inciting the crowd, leading to riots. The petitioners have now challenged this refusal.