An Assault on Freedom of Expression

Noted journalist Mohammad Zubair of Alt News was arrested by Delhi police. He was arrested on charges of hurting religious sentiments; at the same time Prime Minister Narendra Modi was committing to protecting free speech at G7 summit. The PM proudly proclaimed on the foreign soil that democracy is in the DNA of every citizen of this country. But the same country is now witnessing attacks on the very essence of democracy – Freedom of Choice. The police action in arresting Zubair is a “blatant violation” of the country’s commitment made at the international forum. The arrest is extremely disturbing because Zubair and Alt News have done exemplary work in identifying fake news and countering disinformation campaigns.

Nazeer Ahemd Kazi

Prof Secab

Vijaypur, Karnataka

Double Standard

It is horrible to learn that fact-checking website Alt News co-founder Mohammad Zubair has been arrested by Delhi police for allegedly hurting religious sentiments, for which no notice was given by the police.

Why not dare to arrest Nupur Sharma, Naveen Jindal and Yati Narsinghanand yet? Are they nationalists? Such types of double standard shall not be acceptable in our democracy.

Chowdhry Nisar Ahmed

Noorullah Pet, Ambur (T.N.)

Take Strict Actions against Hatemongers

Section 153B of the IPC (Indian Penal Code) says: “Whoever, by words either spoken or written or by signs or by visible representations or otherwise (a) makes or publishes any imputation that any class of persons cannot, by reason of their being members of any religious, racial, language or regional group or caste or community, bear true faith and allegiance to the Constitution of India as by law established or uphold the sovereignty and integrity of India, or (b) asserts, counsels, advises, propagates or publishes that any class of persons by reason of their being members of any religious, racial, language or regional group or caste or community be denied, or deprived of their rights as citizens of India, or (c) makes or publishes any assertion, counsel, plea or appeal concerning the obligation of any class of persons, by reason of their being members of any religious, racial, language or regional group or caste or community, and such assertion, counsel, plea or appeal causes or is likely to cause disharmony or feelings of enmity or hatred or ill-will between such members and other persons, shall be punished with imprisonment which may extend to three years, or with fine, or with both.”

The police claim to monitor Twitter these days. Then, they can see 1000s of handles calling for #TotalBoycott of Muslims. Have they not read Section 153B of IPC? Shouldn’t they act against the hatemongers who post such hate-filled messages? Shouldn’t they investigate the conspirators behind the hashtags? These are the questions that arise in peace- and justice-loving persons of the country. This is high time the police took strict actions against the hatemongers and nipped the hate in the bud.

Tufail Ahmed

Shanti Nagar, Delhi

Brutal Murder in Udaipur Condemnable

The beheading of Kanhaiya Lal, a tailor, by two criminals in Udaipur, Rajasthan is condemnable. The murder was totally against the teachings of Islam as it’s a barbaric act. Such acts have no place in a civilised society. It was reported that he was beheaded by two men for his social media posts supporting ex. BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma, who has been accused of making blasphemous remarks against the minority community.

In this regard, the criminals should be given harshest punishment and justice will be done to the victim’s family.

Chowdhry Nisar Ahmed

Noorullah Pet, Ambur (T.N.)

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