Biggest Crackdown Ever on Indian Press is 'Worse than Emergency'; One-Third of Gujarat’s Population Below Poverty Line
Maldives wants Indian military out, SC raps arbitrary ED, Ashish Mishra thriving on adjournments, dengue kills 1,000 in B’desh, Indians big on miniatures, IIT boy fined for engineering non-veg protest
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Snapshot of the day
October 4, 2023
The arrest on terror charges of NewsClick founder Prabir Purkayastha and HR head Amit Chakravarty and the questioning of over 40 journalists and others from the news portal have been widely condemned by the media fraternity in India. Over 16 media organisations, including the DIGIPUB media foundation, the Press Club of India and the Indian Women’s Press Corps wrote to Chief Justice DY Chandrachud asking him to take steps to defend media freedom in India.
More details are now emerging about the nature of the police raids and the line of questioning being pursued. “Suspects”, who were questioned for six hours, were divided into three categories by parameters unknown, reports The Telegraph. Though the FIR has not been made public, the broad thrust of the terrorism case against NewsClick appears to be that the website has promoted Chinese propaganda. Leaving aside the fact that this charge has nothing to do with terrorism, the police have yet to point to anything specific from the portal’s vast archive which can bear out its allegation.
It may be recalled that Purkayastha was among the rationalists of the Delhi Science Forum who had exposed the sensational conman Ramar Pillai, who had claimed to have transmuted water into petrol for automobile engines using a Boswellia herb, breaking all the laws of thermodynamics and the Motor Spirit Speed Diesel (Regulation of Supply and Distribution and Prevention of Malpractices) Order, too. Pillai had received favourable attention from the government and the press until DSF outed him.
Ravish Kumar speaks about the arrest of journalists. We are wrong to compare the current crisis with the Emergency historian Gyan Prakash tells Seema Chishti. “This
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