Anantpur: A local court today recalled a bailable warrant it had issued last month against cricketer Mahendra Singh Dhoni in connection with a complaint which accuses him of hurting the religious sentiments of Hindus.
Dhoni's lawyers Pankaj Bhagla and M. Vishnuvardhan Reddy today filed a “vakalatnama” before the sessions court judge Y. Vijayakumar who accepted it and withdrew the warrant before posting the matter for final hearing to July 25.
The lawyers told the court that Dhoni came to know about the warrant against him only through the media. The complaint in this regard had been filed in June last year by Gopal Rao and Shyam Sunder who reportedly belonged to a right wing Hindu organisation. The duo had said Dhoni was shown in the form of a Hindu deity on the cover page of a business magazine, holding among other things a shoe in his hand, which they said was “hurting the religious sentiments.”
They also wanted registration of an offence against the then editor of the magazine.
In his counter affidavit filed before the court today, the then editor said the complaint, filed under section 295 (injuring or defiling place of worship with intent to insult the religion of any class) of IPC, was not maintainable and there are no grounds to restore the plaint. “The publication neither destroyed, damaged or defiled any place of worship or any object.
The complainant has also failed to establish the intention to insult any religion or the knowledge of the same on the part of the accused. “The magazine page has to be seen in consonance with the article published inside the magazine, which does not mention about any God directly or remotely not has it made any attempt to portray Dhoni as Lord Vishnu...It is purely a work of art,” he said in the affidavit filed through his advocate V. Yagna Dutt.
The affidavit will also be heard next week.