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Madras High Court issues interim order suspending jail sentence for Vaiko

Madras High Court

The Madras High Court Judge Justice P.D. Audikesavalu has issued an interim order suspending the one-year sentence imposed by a trial court in a sedition case against Rajya Sabha member Vaiko until the finality of his appeal against conviction.

Court issued the interim order after the counsel for Vaiko gave an undertaking that his client would be advised not to make any speeches touching upon the sovereignty of the nation until the disposal of his appeal against the conviction.

State Public Prosecutor (SPP) A. Natarajan who did not raise any serious objection insisted upon directing the appellant to desist from making inflammatory speeches against the State at least until his appeal against the trial court’s July 5 verdict could be heard and disposed of by the High Court.

He pleaded:

“There should be a limit for everything. He cannot go on talking anything he wants and make wild allegations against the Centre. His 2009 speech, in support of LTTE, for which he has been convicted now certainly attracts Section 124A (sedition) of the Indian Penal Code. He himself has admitted to have made that speech.”

Vaiko’s counsel P. Devadoss said, “a politician cannot be made to shut his mouth.”

Court: “There is no question of curtailing anyone’s freedom of speech and expression but at the same time there must be some self restriction. So, think twice before speaking.”

Vaiko had appealed against his conviction and sentence to one year jail on charges of sedition.

 

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