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Criminal complaint filed against Azad, Soz

New Delhi: A criminal complaint was filed on Friday against senior Congress leaders Ghulam Nabi Azad and Saifuddin Soz for making seditious statements in order to “incite disaffection in the minds of the people against the Indian Army and the government.”

According to the complaint filed by advocate Shashi Bhushan at Patiala House Court, Azad had alleged last week that the “Indian army in Jammu and Kashmir was killing more civilians than terrorists during military operations in the state.”

“The remarks painted the army as killers of innocents which was nothing less than waging war against the country. The remarks caused grave consequences and emboldened terrorists for making more attacks on the Indian establishment”, Bhushan said in the complaint.

The plea filed by Bhushan sought action against Azad for offences under Sections 124 (sedition), 120 B (criminal conspiracy) and 505 (1) (spreading rumour about army/navy/air force official which is likely to cause mutiny) of Indian Penal Code (IPC).

Last week, Soz had supported former Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf’s assessment that Kashmiris will “prefer to be independent if they are given a chance to exercise their free will.”

“Pervez Musharraf had said that Kashmiris do not want to merge with Pakistan, their first choice is independence. The statement was true then and it remains true now. I say the same but I know that it is not possible,” Soz had said.

He said the government should hold talks with Pakistan just like Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Manmohan Singh had discussions with Musharraf.

“The solution lies in dialogue. Unfortunately, Musharraf went out of the system. He wanted dignified peace with India,” Soz remarked.

He suggested an “open dialogue” with separatists in Kashmir, including Hurriyat Conference.

Reacting to that, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Friday offered Soz to “move to Pakistan.”

Reacting to Soz’s remarks, Union Minister Jitendra Singh said “when Kashmir-centric politicians are in power, they swear by Kashmir being integral part of India but the moment they are thrown out of power, they start using this separatist or semi-separatist jargon.”

Meanwhile BJP ally Shiv Sena on Friday asked Soz to “buy a one-way ticket to Pakistan.”

“If Soz has so much affection for Pakistan and Musharraf, he should consider migrating to Pakistan,” Sena leader Manisha Kayande told media.

The hearing on the complaint is listed for Saturday.

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