Lakshadweep filmmaker Aisha Sultana on Thursday was booked on sedition charges for her remarks on Central Government and Administrator Praful Khoda Patel. Sultana had criticized Patel’s handling of Covid-19 and called him a bio-weapon sent by the Centre. The FIR was lodged following the complaint of the state BJP chief that she spread false news about Covid-19 in the union territory during a TV channel debate.
Sultana becomes the first woman filmmaker in Lakshadweep’s history to be booked for sedition by Kavarathi police.
Aisha Sultana had, during a debate on a local news channel, accused Praful Patel of the rise in Covid-19 cases in the island and remarked that the Centre had used a bio-weapon against Lakshadweep.
Lakshadweep had zero cases of COVID-19. Now it is reporting a daily spike of 100 cases. What the Centre has deployed is a bioweapon. I can say this clearly that the central government has deployed bioweapon, Sultana had said on a Malayalam TV debate earlier this week.
Her comments did not go down well with BJP workers. C Abdul Khader Haji, the BJP’s Lakshadweep chief, complained to the police accusing her of anti-national comments tarnishing the patriotic image of the central government by her hate speech.
Aisha Sultana has been critical of Praful Patel’s decision and speaking tirelessly about the Union government’s draconian regulations in Lakshadweep and the rights of the indigenous Muslim community in islands.
Justifying her comments on Facebook, Sultana wrote, they have filed a sedition case against me but I want to reiterate that truth will win. The case was filed by a BJP worker from Lakshadweep. I will continue my fight for the land where I was born. We don’t fear anyone. My voice is going to be louder now, she wrote.
Lakshadweep Sahitya Pravarthaka Sangam on Thursday extended support to Aisha. It is not proper to depict her as anti-national. She had reacted against the inhumane approach of the administrator. It was Patel’s interventions that made Lakshadweep a Covid-affected area. The cultural community in Lakshadweep would stand with her, the organisation’s spokesperson, K Bahir, said.