Sikha Sarma, a 48-year old Assamese writer was arrested in Guwahati on Tuesday on the charges of sedition for her offensive Facebook post on Indian security forces post the dastardly Sukma attack which claimed the lives of 22 jawans, according to a report in Indian Express.
The post said, “Salaried professionals who die in the line of duty cannot be termed, martyrs. Going by that logic, electricity department workers who die of electrocution should also be labelled martyrs. Do not make people sentiment, media.” Sarma uploaded the post after several reports of the Maoist attack on security forces which resulted in the martyrdom of 22 jawans surfaced in the media. The post received tremendous backlash on social media.
On Monday, an FIR was filed at the Dispur police station by two advocates of Gauhati High Court, Umi Deka Baruah and Kangkana Goswami against Sikha Sarma. The complainants wrote, “This is in utter disrepute to the honour of our soldiers and such distasteful remarks not only reduce the unparalleled sacrifice of our jawans to a mere ‘money-making discourse’, but is also a verbal assault on the spirit and sanctity of service of the nation,” and requested the authorities to take “strict action” against Sarma.
After facing online flak, Sarma backtracked and responded with another social media post saying, “Isn’t misrepresenting my post mental harassment? Will the false propaganda against me come under rule of law? Why has (there) been no investigation regarding the FIR I filed about the murder and intimidation threats I received earlier?”
The writer who insulted the jawans was arrested by the city police under various sections, including IPC 124A (sedition) basis of the FIR filed. Guwahati Police Commissioner Munna Prasad Gupta informed, “She (Sikha) will be produced in court tomorrow (Wednesday).”
Bijapur-Sukma terrorist attack
In the most destructive terrorist attack of 2021, a group of 400 Naxals ambushed a search operation conducted by various security teams of around 1500 personnel along the border of the Bijapur-Sukma district on Saturday. The counter-attack by Naxalites resulted in the martyrdom of 22 jawans and left 31 injured while some are said to be missing.
A close deadly encounter between the Naxalites and security forces lasted for four hours in which the Naxalites rained bullets from light machine guns, used low-intensity IEDs and rocket launchers.
It was also reported that a group of Maoists chopped off a security official’s hand before killing him and fled the scene with weapons, including bulletproof jackets, guns, ammunition, as well as his shoes. Some security officials were martyred due to dehydration.