Modasa, February 22: Mumbai-based Islamic preacher Mufti Salman Azhari was on Thursday taken under preventive detention by the Gujarat police soon after he was granted bail in a hate speech case registered against him in the state's Arvalli district. Earlier in the day, the court of Additional Sessions Judge HN Vakil granted conditional bail to Azhari, who was booked for delivering an inflammatory speech in an open ground in Modasa on December 24 last year.

This was the third case of hate speech in Gujarat in which the cleric was arrested before being granted bail. However, as soon as Azhari was released on bail, he was detained at Modasa by the Junagadh local crime branch under the Gujarat Prevention of Anti-Social Activities Act (PASA). He will be handed over to Vadodara central jail, Junagadh crime branch inspector Jatin Patel said. “We have detained him under PASA soon after a warrant was issued against him by the Junagadh collector,” Patel said. Mufti Salman Azhari Hate Speech Case: Islamic Preacher Faces Legal Heat; Second FIR Lodged in Gujarat’s Kutch

The act allows the administration to take anti-social elements under preventive detention to maintain public safety. Azhari was held from Mumbai on February 5 after he delivered an alleged hate speech in B division police station limits in Junagadh on January 31. Later, Kutch East police registered a First Information Report (FIR) and arrested him on February 8 for delivering an allegedly provocative speech in Samakhiyari village in Bhachau taluka on January 31.

Azhari was earlier granted bail in cases registered against him in Junagadh and Kutch. In Junagadh and Kutch East, Azhari was booked under Indian Penal Code sections 153B (promoting enmity between different religious groups) and 505 (2) (making statements conducive to public mischief). Besides IPC sections 153 (B) and 505 (2), Azhari has also been charged under section 298 for uttering words with deliberate intent to wound the religious feelings of any person in the Modasa case. Mufti Salman Azhari Hate Speech Case: Gujarat Police Get Transit Remand of Islamic Preacher

According to the police, the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act has also been invoked as he made derogatory remarks against the SC community in his speech at Modasa.