Bodies of Journalists Demand Cancellation of FIR by UP Police Against Scribes for Broadcasting Video

Video captures of Abdul Samad Saifi, 72, recounting his ordeal (center) after being beaten (right) and his beard cut | Photo: Twitter

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New Delhi: Bodies of journalists on Wednesday demanded the cancellation of an FIR filed by Uttar Pradesh police against a news portal and a few journalists for showing a video clip in which an elderly Muslim says he was beaten and invited to sing “Jai Sri Ram”.

Expressing shock and disappointment at the police action, the Indian Women’s Press Corps (IWPC) said police in Ghaziabad, under whose jurisdiction the alleged attack on the elderly man took place, devotes time and resources to attacking journalists and media outlets.

It appears to be an attempt to muzzle the media and distract attention, the body of reporters said.

“We urge the UP police to focus on investigating the crime and bringing the perpetrators to justice,” IWPC said, adding: We demand that the FIR against journalists and media outlets be quashed .

The Press Club of India (PCI) also called for the cancellation of the FIR against journalists, and called on the government of Uttar Pradesh to intervene in the case as soon as possible to ensure that journalists do not become journalists. easy targets of the authoritarian police by filing the FIR against them. .

The FIR filing clearly shows the vendetta by the Ghaziabad police force to create a sense of state terror in the media and society in general, the PCI said in a statement.

Uttar Pradesh Police on Tuesday filed FIR against Twitter Inc, Twitter Communications India, news portal The Wire, scribes Mohammed Zubair and Rana Ayyub and journalist and lead author Saba Naqvi as well as Congress leaders Salman Nizami, Masqoor Usmani and Sama Mohammad for sharing the music video on social media.

The IWPC and PCI both argued that the follow-up reports and tweets based on the incidents, which were already in the public domain, in no way violated public order, propagated hatred and social tensions as claimed. the FIR.

As reported by the media, and as shown in a video that was widely disseminated, an elderly man belonging to the minority community was attacked and kidnapped by criminals in the Loni neighborhood of Ghaziabad, IWPC reported.

The appalling incident was a crime against an elderly person from a minority community, and the assault appeared to be communal in nature, the IWPC added.

The IWPC urged all media organizations and journalists to speak out against such motivated attempts to isolate and attack journalists, as well as to undermine the right to freedom of speech and expression.

Read also : Twitter faces first FIR under new IT rules, journalists also booked for articles on Muslim man

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