Twitter user Sameet Thakkar, who was arrested on October 24 for allegedly making objectionable comments against Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and Environment Minister Aaditya Thackeray on social media, was granted bail by a Nagpur Court on Monday. However, Thakkar was rearrested by Mumbai Police and is being brought to Mumbai from Nagpur, said BJP spokesperson Suresh Nakhua.
Taking to Twitter, he wrote, "Sameet Thakkar granted bail by Hon' Court. And Mumbai VP Road Police has re-arrested him & bringing him to Mumbai from Nagpur. #AghadiSarkarEmergency (sic)."
Earlier, Nagpur's Sitabuldi Police had arrested Thakkar for allegedly posting derogatory remarks on social media. According to the police, Thakkar, a Nagpur resident, had tweeted objectionable posts about the Thackerays and Energy Minister Nitin Raut on June 1, June 30 and July 1, where he had addressed Maharashtra's Chief Minister as ‘Aurangzeb’ and Aaditya (his) ‘Penguin beta’. When this post was seen by the complainant, a Mumbai-based advocate Dharmendra Mishra, who is also a legal consultant for Shiv Sena, he approached VP Road police station on July 13.
Accordingly, police had booked Thakkar under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code for obscenity (Section 292), defamation (Section 500) and Section 67 of the Information Technology Act. According to the orders of the Bombay High Court, Thakkar was asked to be present on October 5 at VP Road police station. He appeared but soon left the police station giving an excuse of using the washroom.
During the hearing in the Bombay High Court on October 9, Thakkar said that he had escaped from the VP Road police station due to the fear of arrest by the cyber cell. The court then again had on October 16 asked Thakkar to visit the VP Road police station again to record his statement, but he did not appear in the police station.
A similar complaint was lodged at Nagpur's Sitabuldi police station, wherein he was booked under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code and Information Technology Act. However, after the Bombay HC dismissed the petition of quashing the FIR, Thakkar was arrested on October 24 by Nagpur's Sitabuldi Police. He was first sent to police custody till October 30, which was later extended till November 2.
According to a report, Sameet Thakkar is a member of the BJP IT cell. Complainant Dharmendra Mishra had earlier told Mid-Day, "Thakkar is part of a hate brigade working with the IT cell of BJP and lives in Nagpur." However, Suresh Nakhua said that he is "neither an office bearer of @BJP4India or any state unit of BJP nor is he IT Cell Member."
Besides, Thakkar has over 59,000 followers on Twitter and is followed by some prominent BJP leaders on the social media platform including PM Modi, Railways Minister Piyush Goyal's office, BJP MPs Maneka Gandhi, Varun Gandhi, BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra and Delhi BJP leader Tajinder Pal Singh Bagga.