Lucknow: The Uttar Pradesh government on Tuesday said it would appeal in a higher court against the relief given to BJP general secretary Varun Gandhi by exonerating him of a hate speech charge. Inspector General (IG) Crime Ashish Gupta told mediapersons that the chief judicial magistrate's court had exonerated Varun in two different cases - February 27 and March 5.
"We have ample time to appeal in further courts against this decision," Gupta said. He added that in both cases, the state had time till May 25 and June 3 to appeal.
Gupta said that the state government would be filing an appeal in the court's verdict letting off Gandhi. Regarding a similar exoneration by a Pilibhit sessions court May 3, the IG said the state government would appeal against the verdict in the high court.
Varun Gandhi was accused of inciting communal passions and targeting minorities in his speech in 2009 and was booked by the then Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) government led by Mayawati.
BJP leaders Tuesday said that the state government was trying to appease minorities by not respecting the court verdict. SP insiders said the decision was hastened after Muslim supporters and leaders accused the government of "going soft on Varun Gandhi".
Soon after this, a decision was taken by the SP leadership to contest Varun Gandhi's exoneration and ask its law officers to take up the matter in the higher courts.