The Delhi High Court has stayed a program on Sudarshan News that was scheduled to be aired at 8 PM today, on a petition filed by Jamia Millia Islamia students. It has been alleged that the program may incite hatred against Muslims, as it alleges conspiracy to induct more Muslims in the civil and police services through UPSC examinations.
The stay order stopping the broadcast of the show was passed by Justice Navin Chavla after an urgent hearing. The petition was filed by advocate Shadan Farasat on behalf of current and former students of Jamia.
The petitioners said that they have seen the trailer of the show posted on social media on 25th August, where editor of the channel Suresh Chavhank allegedly engaged in hate speech and defamation against students of Jamia Milia Islamia and the Muslim community. The show claims that the success of Jamia students in the UPSC exmas is a “conspiracy to infiltrate the civil service by Muslims”, the petition stated.
The petitioners added that Suresh Chavhank has “openly incited his target non-Muslim audience by fear-mongering that “jihadis” or terrorists from Jamia Milia Islamia would soon hold positions of authority and power like that of Collector and Secretary”. They contended that the program violates the programme code determined under the Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act along with the Cable Television Networks Rules 1994.
Sudarshan News chief editor Suresh Chavhanke had posted a video of the program to be aired on 28th August, where he had informed that the channel is analysing what they claim is the sudden increase in the number of Muslims selected in various posts in administrative and police services in the country, along with an increase in marks obtained by Muslim candidates in compared with others.
He had announced that it will be the channel’s big campaign against the ‘bureaucracy jihad’ and ‘UPSC Jihad’. ‘imagine jihadis from Jamia becoming your district commissioner and secretaries in every ministry’ he warned in the dramatic video.
After the controversial video was posted, it attacked criticism from various sides, notably from left-liberals and Islamists. It was alleged that Suresh Chavhanke is spreading hate against Muslims, and several petitions were filed against the channel. PS Association and Indian Police Foundation also condemned the program. .
Following the criticism, Suresh Chavhanke responded by saying that the program is about “Sudden spike in no of people of certain category selected in UPSC Civils in the last few years”. He had also claimed that terror leader Zakir Naik is also involved in the alleged conspiracy.
The case will be heard next on September 7.