Mamata Banerjee national anthem case: Mumbai sessions stayed summons issued by lower court

News Desk: The Mumbai sessions court has stayed the summons issued by a lower court to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee asking her to appear before it on March 2.

Judge Rahul Rokde of the special court, which deals with cases related to elected members like MPs and MLAs, has also issued a notice to the complainant, a BJP functionary, advocate Vivekanand Gupta. The court has also called for records of proceedings from the Mazgaon magistrate court, which issued the summons.

Advocate Vivekanand Gupta had filed a complaint against Mamata Banerjee for insulting the national anthem during one of her visits to the city on December 1, 2021. The complaint was filed under Section 3 of the Prevention of Insult to National Honours Act 1971 by BJP Mumbai secretary Gupta. In his complaint, Gupta had sought that an FIR be registered against Banerjee.

The complaint stated that Mamata Banerjee was attending a programme convened by writer-poet Javed Akhtar and she was the main speaker. According to Gupta, at the end of the programme, Banerjee was seen in a “sitting position” and “singing the national anthem and later she stood up and sang two verses and abruptly stopped singing the national anthem”. Banerjee’s video was viral on social media.

Gupta’s complaint to the court states that Banerjee had shown “utter disrespect to the national anthem” and she even left the venue after stopping the anthem abruptly. After hearing Gupta at length, Magistrate PI Mokashi issued the summons.

However, advocate Majeed Memon, filed a decision in the Mumbai sessions court and argued at length asking for the summons to be stayed and raised issues regarding how the process issued by the Magistrate court was faulty.

Judge Rokde will further hear the case on March 25.