TV panelist Waqar H Bhatti arrested for ‘hurting religious sentiments’

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Jammu and Kashmir police today arrested social activist Waqar H Bhatti for allegedly hurting religious sentiments with his ‘shivling’ tweet which caused social media outrage, reported PTI.

Following his tweet, which was later deleted, netizens demanded his immediate arrest.

“FIR was registered following his tweet, which hurt religious sentiments,” a senior police officer was quoted as saying to PTI.

Bhatti was later arrested, he said.

Facing a backlash on social media, Bhatti had sought to clarify his tweet with another tweet saying, “I did not target any religion and why should I target when the matter is in court.” A few days ago, Delhi University Associate Professor Ratan Lal was arrested for his alleged objectionable social media post on claims of a ‘Shivling’ at the Gyanvapi mosque in Varanasi.

He was granted bail a day later.

On May 16, a local court in Varanasi directed the district administration to seal a spot in the Gyanvapi Masjid complex after counsels representing the Hindu petitioners claimed that a Shivling was found during a court-mandated videography survey.

A mosque management committee spokesperson disputed the claim, telling a television channel that the object was part of a “fountain”.

A day later, the top court directed the district magistrate of Varanasi to ensure the protection of an area inside the Gyanvapi-Shringar Gauri complex where a ‘Shivling’ was said to have been found and allowed Muslims to offer ‘namaz’ and perform “religious observances”.

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