Allahabad High Court grants bail to man who allegedly posted Pakistani flag with ‘I Love You Pakistan’ caption on Facebook

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The Allahabad High Court recently granted bail to one Mohammad Niyaz, who was booked for sedition after he allegedly posted a photograph of Pakistani flag on his Facebook account with a caption ‘I love you Pakistan’ [Mohammad Niyaz v. State of UP].

Single judge Justice Om Prakash Tripathi, granted bail to Niyaz without expressing any view on the merits of the case.

“Upon hearing learned counsel and perusal of record and considering the complicity of accused, severity of punishment as well as totality of facts and circumstances, at this stage without expressing any view on the merits of the case, this Court is of the opinion that it is a fit case for bail. Hence, the bail application is hereby allowed,” the Court said

Niyaz was booked under Section 124A (sedition) of the Indian Penal Code on the ground that he supported and posted the flag of Pakistan. He was in jail since October 27, 2021.

A First Information Report was lodged against Niyaz on a complaint made by one Puneet Kumar, who alleged that the applicant wrote, “I Love you Pakistan on his Facebook ID.

The counsel for applicant contended that he is innocent and has been falsely implicated. He further said that the applicant supported and posted flag of the neighbouring country through Facebook. Further, it was submitted that he belongs to labour class and never tried to create any social disturbance.

On the other hand, Additional Government Advocate opposed the prayer for bail but did not dispute the other submissions made by counsel for accused.

The Court, therefore, thought it fit to grant bail.

“Let the applicant Mohammad Niyaz be released on bail in Case Crime No. 266 of 2021, under Section 124A IPC, Police Station- Faizganj Behta, District- Budaun, on furnishing a personal bond and two sureties each in the like amount to the satisfaction of magistrate/court concerned,” the order said.

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