The Maharashtra police on Thursday filed a First Information Report against Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader Praveen Togadia for his hate speech at a rally in Nanded district last month.

The Nanded police have slapped Sections 153 (A), 295, 505 (2) on Dr. Togadia for promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, intending to outrage religious feelings or any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs by deliberate and malicious acts and for making statements creating or promoting enmity, hatred or ill-will between classes.

Dr. Togadia delivered an anti-Muslim rant at the January 22 rally organised by the Hindu Hit Sammelan in Bhokar. The FIR has taken exception to the VHP leaders’ comments in which he alluded to the 1983 Nellie massacre in Assam and other communal riots in the country: “Over 3,000 people had died [in the Nellie massacre], not one of them was a Hindu. ” Dr. Togadia’s invective was a communal retort to MIM MLA Akbaruddin Owaisi’s anti-Hindu diatribe last month at Nirmal in Andhra Pradesh.