Manipur-based political activist Leichombam Erendro, who was arrested in May for sedition – for writing “cow dung and cow urine doesn’t work” on Facebook was released from jail on Monday evening.
Erendro was detained under the National Security Act for his social media posts allegedly on the efficacy of cow dung and urine as cures for Covid 19.
He was released at 4.45 pm – 15 minutes before the expiry of a Supreme Court deadline.
Speaking after his release, Erendro accused the government of trying to “silence everyone with NSA (the National Security Act)” and declared “but that is not going to work”.
“326 cases of sedition across India. Let me tell you something… the Supreme Court came out and said, ‘Why are we using the sedition law, which was used by the British to arrest freedom fighters. Mahatma Gandhi himself was arrested under the sedition law,” he said.
“I think the current government is trying to abuse the power of the Executive and go beyond the Constitution… and trying to silence everybody. But I don’t think that’s going to work. India is a very strong democracy.” Erendro added.
The activist, along with journalist Kishorechandra Wangkhem, was arrested for posting the comment after the death of the former chief of BJP state unit, Saikhom Tikendra Singh.
Manipur BJP Vice President Usham Deban and General Secretary P Premananda Meetei filed the complaint against them, claiming that their posts were offensive.
Supreme Court directs release of Manipur-based political activist, Leichombam Erendro, by 5 PM today, detained under NSA for criticism of BJP leaders on cures for #COVID19;
Says, he cannot be put in jail for even a night. (Agencies)
■ Hawk Eye News
— Shrinath Vashishtha 🇮🇳 (@MrGladPortBlair) July 19, 2021
In June 2020, Erendro was charged with sedition over a Facebook post that had the photo of Rajya Sabha MP Sanajaoba Leishemba with Union Home Minister Amit Shah.
The photo, captioned “minai macha”, showed Manipur’s titular king bowing down to Amit Shah. Roughly translated from Meitei, Manipur’s native language, it means “son of a servant”.
The political activist from Manipur was released on bail in that case.