New Delhi (AP) – A Muslim journalist accused of insulting religious sentiments was arrested by police in the Indian capital New Delhi on Monday night, which many have criticized as another example of how freedom of expression is being curtailed. Modi.
Mohammed Zubair, one of the co-founders of the verification website Alt News, was arrested for allegedly tweeting to police that he had insulted a “god of a particular religion.” KBS police official Malhotra said the case was registered on a complaint by a Twitter user and that Zubair had been remanded in custody for a day.
Journalists across India have been increasingly persecuted for their work in recent years. Some have been detained under serious criminal charges for posting on social media, where they are often beaten and threatened. The Twitter accounts of several journalists and media outlets have been blocked by government orders.
The arrest immediately caused a great stir. Opposition activists, journalists and politicians condemned the news as a harassment of journalists and demanded Zubair’s immediate release.
“In a democracy, all individuals have the right to exercise their freedom of expression and expression; it is unreasonable for such regulatory laws to be used as a tool against journalists,” DIGIPUB said in a statement to the Indian Digital Media Network.
Alt News, founded in 2017 as a non-profit organization, is India’s most popular news verification site and has a reputation for covering hate speech and misinformation, especially from Hindu nationalists. Its founders often face threats and attacks online from conservative groups affiliated with Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party.
Associated Press journalist Krithika Pathi contributed to the report.
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