• Wednesday, May 18, 2022
  • Last Update : 03:54 pm

Arrest warrant against Baul singer Rita Dewan, 2 others for hurting religious sentiment

  • Published at 02:34 pm December 2nd, 2020
Baul Rita Dewan
Baul singer Rita Dewan Collected

PBI filed a report against the three people on October 29

A court has issued arrest warrant against three people, including Baul singer Rita Dewan, in a case filed under the Digital Security Act for hurting religious sentiments.

The other accused are Shahjahan, 45, and Md Iqbal Hossain, 48, the owners of YouTube channels Kokil TV and Channel Rupali HD, respectively, said Inspector Sheikh Md Mizanur Rahman of Police Bureau of Investigation (PBI), the officer investigating the case.  

Dhaka Cyber Tribunal Judge Assam Jaglul Hossain accepted a report and issued the arrest warrant on Wednesday, said the plaintiff's advocate Imrul Hasan.

On October 29, Inspector Mizanur Rahman filed the report against the trio.

Imrul Hasan, a member of the Dhaka Bar Association, filed the case under the Digital Security Act in the court on February 2. The judge then directed the PBI to investigate the allegations and submit the report.

Also read - Bangladeshi star's comeback after Islamist death threats

Imrul said Rita made derogatory comments regarding Allah while competing with another singer in a mystic song duel [Pala gaan] at a recent event.

As the song went viral on YouTube, it hurt the religious sentiment of the lawyer. He also claimed that the song hurt the sentiments of the "Muslim community."

Section 28 (1) of the Digital Security Act 2018 says that "if any person or group intentionally or knowingly with the aim of hurting religious sentiments or values or with the intention to provoke publish or broadcast anything by means of any website or any electronic format which hurts religious sentiment or values, then such activity of that person will be considered an offence." 

Moreover, the law reads: "If any person commits an offence under sub section (1), the person will be sentenced to a term of imprisonment not exceeding seven years or fines not exceeding Tk 10 lakh, or both. If any person commits the offence mentioned in sub-section (1) a second time or repeatedly, he will be punished with imprisonment not exceeding 10 years or fines not exceeding Tk 20 lakh, or both."

Meanwhile, Rita apologized on February 1 in an interview on YouTube channel Gaan Rupali HD after the song went viral on the Internet.

Earlier on January 9, Baul singer Shariat Sarkar, was arrested for allegedly making comments that hurt "religious sentiments" under section 28 of the Digital Security Act. Mohammad Faridul Islam filed the case with Mirzapur police station in Tangail.

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