Case Title: Muzammil vs State of Karnataka
A single bench of Justice M Nagaprasanna of Karnataka High Court quashed criminal proceedings initiated against two men accused of writing a protest slogan: ‘Hijab is our dignity’, on the walls of a government school last year.
The bench said that section 1 of the Act will have to be applied for an incident to become an offence under section 3 of the Karnataka Open Places Disfigurement (Prevention) Act, 1981.
“It is an admitted fact that Hosapete Town is not the one that is notified to be coming within the Act, for the respondents to allege that the petitioners have incurred themselves the wrath of Section 3 of the Act. In the light of the fact that there is no notification issued by the State bringing in Hosapete Town under the Act, further proceedings if permitted to continue would become an abuse of the process of the law and result in miscarriage of justice”.
The complaint was filed by the headmaster of the Government Girls High school before the Hosapete Town Police Station under section 3 of the Karnataka Open Places Disfigurement (Prevention) Act, 1981, by alleging that when he entered the premises of the school, the wall was painted with the black paint “Hijab is our dignity”.
Section 3 of the said act states about the penalty for unauthorized disfigurement by advertisement.
The advocate for the petitioner submitted that Hosapete is not one of those area which is coming under the Act under any notification.
Agreeing to the said submission made by the petitioner’s advocate, bench allowed the petition of petitioner.