Author Arundhati Roy can be sentenced to 7 years imprisonment in connection with inflammatory speech case

Debjit Mukherjee: Author Arundhati Roy can be sentenced to a maximum of 7 years imprisonment if found guilty in the trial. Delhi Lieutenant Governor VK Saxena has recently given permission to prosecute the case against her. Not only Arundhati, permission has also been given to prosecute the case against Kashmir University professor Sheikh Shaukat Hussain. Another accused in this case, Syed Abdul Rahman Gilani, has already passed away. The accused are accused of giving inflammatory speech at a public meeting in Delhi in 2010.

Arundhati Roy won the Booker Prize in 1997 for writing the novel ‘God of the Small Things’. It is alleged that he demanded the separation of Kashmir from India while addressing an event, named ‘Azadi: The Only Way’. The same allegation is against another accused Saxena.

A case has been filed against the accused under sections 153A, 153B and 505 of the Indian Penal Code. Delhi Police has also applied to charge them under Section 13 of the UAPA. However, for the time being, the Lieutenant Governor of Delhi has allowed the initiation of cases under all three sections of the IPC. If the case is initiated under that section as well, Arundhati could face a maximum sentence of 7 years if convicted.