Digipub Calls Mohammed Zubair’s Arrest ‘Legal Harassment’ – Here’s Why Alt News Co-Founder Was Detained

The Digipub News India Foundation has condemned the arrest of Mohammed Zubair, co-founder of Alt News. Zubair was detained on Monday for allegedly hurting the religious feelings of a community.

Referring to the various FIRs against Zubair, Digipub called the decision “legal harassment” and said, “In a democracy, where every individual has the right to exercise freedom of speech and expression, it is unjustified that such strict laws are used as tools against journalists…”

(Credit: @DigipubIndia)

Why was Mohammed Zubair arrested?

According to police, a complaint was received against Zubair via Twitter regarding a tweet he posted in 2018. The social media post allegedly showed a hotel sign on which “Honeymoon hotel” was changed to “Hanuman hotel”.

A case against Zubair was filed based on the post of a “Hanuman Bhakt @balajikijaiin” who expressed his anger, police said. Zubair was summoned for questioning, after which the IFSO (Intelligence Fusion & Strategic Operations) unit of the Delhi Police Special Cell arrested him.

Zubair was convicted under sections 153A and 295A of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), Delhi police said. Police also said Zubair would be brought before a magistrate for remand. The magistrate remanded Zubair on remand for one day.

What articles 153A and 295A say

Section 153A of the ICC is invoked when a person is accused of promoting enmity between different groups on the grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence and language.

A person is charged under Section 295A when he is accused of having committed willful and malicious acts, intended to outrage the religious feelings of any class by insulting his religion or religious beliefs.

In the case of Zubair, Delhi Police said: “The said post containing images and words against a particular religious community is highly provocative and deliberately done which is more than enough to incite hatred among people and may be detrimental to the maintenance of public peace”.

(Edited by : Akriti Anand)

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