Dept Of Telecommunication Official Suspended After Reporting Delhi MLA Kapil Mishra's Hate Video
Rebel Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) MLA Kapil Mishra released a hate video (now taken down by Youtube). In this video, Mishra called out for violence against public figures like Naseeruddin Shah, Kamal Hassan, Congress Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu, lawyer Prashant Bhushan, journalist Barkha Dutt and activist Shehla Rashid. Considering the volatile nature of the video, Ashish Joshi, the Controller of Communication Accounts, Dehradun, Uttarakhand, brought it to the notice of the Commissioner of Police, Delhi. He sent a letter on February 25 to the Commissioner, and on February 26, an order from the Department of Telecommunications was released, suspending Ashish Joshi.
Neither the reason for the suspension is mentioned in the order, nor is the period for which he is suspended has been mentioned.
Order of suspension
In the video, Mishra called the aforementioned people “traitors” and asked them to be attacked in their houses and then dragged out on to the streets. “Some Barkha tries to shift the attention away from Pulwama (terror attack), Some Swara (Bhasker) tries to defame the country…Some Naseeruddin (Shah) says that the country is reeling under terror. But the very next day, he goes to Karachi wagging his tail. Some Kamal Haasan talks about holding a plebiscite. Some Shehla (Rashid) spreads fake news against India every day….This (Prashant) Bhushan, who gets the court to work in at night and this (Navjot Singh) Sidhu, who lectures for peace even in the battleground,” said Mishra in the video.
When asked about the video, Mishra told Janta Ka Reporter that people who worked against the country and are supporting the terrorists need to be thrashed and that he supported it.
Soon after the video was posted, it came to the notice of Ashish Joshi who then wrote to the Commissioner of Police, Delhi. In the letter he said, “It is brought to your kind notice that one Mr Kapil Mishra, has circulated highly incendiary video, provoking people to attack some citizens.
A day after the letter was sent, Joshi received an order for his suspension. The suspension order said that he is suspended with “immediate effect”. While the order doesn’t mention the period of suspension, it does say that during this period, “Joshi will be paid subsistence allowance, which shall be 50% of his basic pay and allowance as admissible”.
Notably, as per reports, no action whatsoever has been taken against Mishra for his hate video, except for the video being pulled down by Youtube.
Mr Joshi later tweeted on his suspension:
Please see section 21 of IPC.
It defines a 'Public Servant'. Every Civil Servant is also a Public Servant
It is expected of a Public Servant to bring to notice of another Public Servant , if he sees something amiss.
Communication obviously will be on the letter -head. https://t.co/7JnwIeaVdL
— Ashish Joshi (@acjoshi) February 26, 2019
Probable reason for the suspension
Reportedly, no reason has been rendered for the suspension and neither any explanation has been sought from Joshi. A senior official at the Ministry of Communications told The Indian Express that suspension came as Mr Joshi, before writing to the Delhi police, did not take his seniors into confidence. Though, Kapil Mishra tweeted that the suspension is his victory
जिस का फ़र्ज़ी लेटर दिखाकर आप सब मुझे अरेस्ट करवाना चाहते थे, उसकी नौकरी गयी
This man @acjoshi is suspended from his job
अब कोई नया ड्रामा करों
आप सबकी दुकान भी ऐसे ही बंद होगी https://t.co/bTn73n8HWg
— Kapil Mishra (@KapilMishra_IND) February 26, 2019
At this time, another letter, dated February 19, written by Mr Joshi comes into picture where he brought to notice the “Misuse of Telecom Network for sending obscene and vulgar messages” by miscreants to journalists Ravish Kumar and Abhisar Sharma. Phone numbers of these journalists were reportedly posted on social media which prompted thousands of calls/messages being sent to them.
The Logical Indian Take
Mr Joshi has been receiving abusive and threatening messages after he acted on Kapil Mishra’s video. Mr Joshi also started an email id where anyone receiving hate and abusive messages can report, and action will be taken.
If anyone is receiving abusive/offensive/death threats/ vulgar whatsapp messages ,please send screen shots of the message along with the mobile numbers at [email protected]
We will take it up with the telecom operators and police heads for necessary action.
— Ashish Joshi (@acjoshi) February 22, 2019
Though the promptness and helping attitude of Mr Joshi should have been appreciated, it seems it wasn’t liked by people sitting in power. He is one of the first bureaucrats who decided to take action against those who try to shut anyone having a different opinion with their abuses and hatred. Though the govt hasn’t given reasons for his suspension but it sends a wrong message to those who stand to safeguard the constitution and are upright officers. In the past four and a half years, rarely action has been taken against those who run misogynistic and hatred campaign on social media but anyone standing against it, has definitely faced the wrath.