Scorpion over ShivLinga remark: Bailable warrant issued against Tharoor

New Delhi

A Delhi court has issued bailable warrants against Congress lawmaker Shashi Tharoor in connection with a defamation case pertaining to his alleged “scorpion sitting on Shivling” remark against Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The court had, in the last hearing, adjourned the order on the framing of notice against the Congress lawmaker till November 11.

Chief Metropolitan Magistrate (CMM) Naveen Kumar Kashyap on Monday issued a bailable warrant against him after he failed to appear before it. The lawmaker did not move the exemption application for the same.

“Neither the accused nor his counsel is present. Under these circumstances, taking a lenient view, issue bailable warrants against the accused in the sum of Rs 5000 and notice to his surety,” the order copy stated.

The court also directed the complainant, BJP leader Rajiv Babbar, to pay a sum of Rs 500 for not appearing before the court.

In October 2018, Tharoor had stoked a controversy by invoking a news article where an unnamed RSS leader had compared Prime Minister Narendra Modi to a “scorpion sitting on a Shivling”.

“There is an extraordinarily striking metaphor expressed by an unnamed RSS source to a journalist, who expressed their frustration to curb Modi — ‘Modi is like a scorpion sitting on a shivling. You can’t remove him with your hand and you cannot hit it with a ‘chappal’ (slipper) either,” he had said.

Tharoor had added, “If you try to touch the scorpion, you will be stung, but if you hit a shivling with the chappal, it undermines all the sacred tenets of the faith. That may well be an interesting clue to the rather complex dynamics that exist between the Hindutva movement and the Moditva expression on it.”

Subsequently, a complaint was filed by Rajiv Babbar alleging that Tharoor’s remarks hurt his religious sentiments.

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