Bangladesh: Journalists, activists protest against Zubair’s arrest

As Alt News co-founder and fact-checker battles in court for posting a 2018-old tweet, journalists and human rights activists in neighbouring Bangladesh protested against his arrest, demanding for his immediate release.

Background

Alt News co-founder Mohammed Zubair was arrested by the Delhi Police on June 27 for a tweet, dated 2018.

MS Education Academy

The police registered a case following a complaint from a Twitter handle @balajikijai otherwise known as ‘Hanuman Bhakt’. This was the first-ever tweet by @balajikijai. Before that, there were no tweets from that handle. Interestingly, the Twitter handle now stays deleted.

According to Deputy Commissioner of Police KPS Malhotra, “Such tweets were getting re-tweeted and it appeared that there is a brigade of social media entities, who indulge in insult mongering thereby leading to a possible ramification on communal harmony and is overall against the maintenance of public tranquillity.”

Zubair was produced before a Chief Metropolitan Magistrate after the completion of his one-day police custody. The court remanded him to four-day police custody.

The journalist’s arrest evoked massive condemnation by politicians, journalists, intellectuals and citizens in general. #IStandWithZubair trended on Twitter in support of the popular fact checker.

Interestingly, Zubair was arrested when Prime Minister Narendra Modi was attending the G7 summit in Germany where he had pledged to defend democratic principles and protect the freedom of expression.

Zubair’s case is currently been heard by Delhi’s Patiala House Court.

His arrest has gained considerable media attention which has also led to the spread of fake news. On July 2, as the court hearing was being conducted, news broke out that Zubair’s bail plea had been rejected and he was sent to 14-days of police custody.

However, his lawyer Soutik Banerjee dismissed the reports.

After hours of delay, the judge finally dismissed Zubair’s bail plea and granted the Delhi police 14-day judicial custody of the journalist, for further investigation.

Subscribe us on The Siasat Daily - Google News
Back to top button