SC protects Nandy, raps him for being irresponsible

"Why do you say something that you don't intend? You are tying yourself up in knots. He cannot continue making statements like this. Whatever may be your intent you cannot go on making such statements. Tell your client he has no licence to make such comments. We are not going to accept it."

Nandy's lawyer questioned the registration of several FIRs for the same comment. The bench replied: "Why not more than one FIR can be lodged? It affects people all over. If people are offended in different parts of the country, there will be many FIRs."

When Lekhi complained that a hysteria had been built, the bench responded: "Who is creating hysteria? It is certainly not us... Who is author of the statement? Who made such statements? Don't blame others for it now."

The bench stayed Nandy's arrest until further orders and issued notices to the Centre and Rajasthan on his plea to quash the FIR. It also issued notices to Chhattisgarh, Maharashtra and Bihar where Lekhi said other FIRs had been lodged and sought a response within four weeks.

Nandy had moved the apex court on Thursday, seeking imminent protection, quashing of the FIRs, and issuance of guidelines to ascertain what constituted an offence under the SC/ST Act in the light of constitutionally guaranteed freedom of speech and expression.

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