One of Bollywood’s most popular singers, Abhijeet Bhattacharya, finds himself embroiled in a communal controversy for badmouthing the Muslim practice of namaaz and terming a reputed Indian advocate “a member of Taliban”.
The singer, who owns three flats at the Versova Breeze building in Andheri, Mumbai, has apparently been letting out his flats to a large group since more than two years, with about 40-50 people staying in them at a time and without obtaining the mandatory permission from the society or getting a police verification done.
When residents and society committee members raised objections about this and called Abhijeet for a meeting citing water shortage and security problems, he is learnt to have stormed in and vehemently abused the Secretary. Thereafter, without any personal matter with advocate Mr Rizwan Siddiquee, another member of the society, Abhijeet abused him and termed him “a member of Taliban”. He further went on to disrespect the advocate’s religious faith and made insulting comments about the pious Muslim practice of namaaz and other religious processes followed by the community. Around a dozen members were witness to the incident.
Being a reputed and respected advocate, Mr Siddiquee could not tolerate such indecent and unruly behaviour and has dragged the singer to court. “I am a proud Indian and equally proud of my religion. Abhijeet not only hurt my religious sentiments but has also shown his biased attitude and hatred towards the followers of Islam,” the advocate lamented.
The case has been filed in Andheri Court and Siddiquee has pleaded the court to issue process against the singer for offences punishable under Section 290 (for creating public nuisance), Section 295-A (deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs), Section 298 (uttering, words, etc., with deliberate intent to wound the religious feelings of any person), Sections 352 and 355 (grave provocation with intent to dishonour person), Section 500 (defamation), Section 504 (criminal intimidation, insult intended to provoke breach of peace, which is punishable under Section 506) and Section 506 (whoever commits the offence of criminal intimidation shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine, or both).
“I also want Abhijeet to issue a public apology for abusing and attacking Islam and talking about namaaz in a derogatory and rowdy manner,” said Siddiquee.