Mohammad Zubair: Indian police arrest Muslim journalist for insulting Hindus

Mohammad Zubair: Indian police arrest Muslim journalist for insulting Hindus

Mohammad Zubair, co-founder of the fact-finding website Alt News, which spreads false information in the Indian media, was arrested on Monday and remanded in police custody overnight, said KPS Malhotra, deputy head of Delhi’s cybercrime department. Was placed in

Malhotra said Zubair was arrested under two sections of the Indian Penal Code, which deals with maintaining religious harmony.

Zubair often tweets criticism of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for what he and other critics claim is a violation of the rights of the country’s nearly 200 million Muslims.

His arrest comes amid repeated allegations by critics that the BJP is using colonial-era laws to prevent any criticism and encourage self-censorship.

Zubair’s lawyer, Colpet House, said the reporter was summoned for questioning about his social media posts about the 2020 criminal investigation – which had previously prevented him from being arrested by the Delhi High Court. But when she responded to the summons, police arrested her for another case, she said.

The house revealed a police complaint to CNN in which Twitter user Zubair was accused of insulting Hindus on the platform in 2018, in a post that changed the name of a hotel to Hindu.

She accused the authorities of not following proper procedures and not informing Zubair.

Malhotra, the deputy commissioner, did not respond to CNN questions about whether police had followed proper procedures at the time of his arrest.

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Earlier this month, Zubair had criticized the now-suspended national spokesman for the BJP, Nopur Sharma, for making insulting remarks about Islam’s Prophet Muhammad – remarks that had caused a diplomatic rift. At least 15 Muslim-majority countries condemned Sharma’s remarks, summoning some Indian ambassadors and calling the remarks “Islamophobic.”

Zubair’s recent social media posts include videos of him claiming that Hindu extremists spread hatred against Islam, a minority religion in India where nearly 80% of the population is Hindu.

Zubair’s arrest has angered politicians, journalists and news organizations, who have called for his release.

Indian Managers Association in one Statement “Obviously, the Alt News alert was angered by those who use it as a tool to polarize society and provoke nationalist sentiment,” it said on Tuesday.

Shashi Taroor, a member of India’s opposition Congress party, said the arrest was an “attack on reality”.

“A few of India’s fact-checking services, particularly Alt News, are doing an important service in our post-factual political environment, facing misinformation,” Terror said. Wrote Monday on Twitter. “They are lying to anyone who does this. The arrest of (Zubair) is an attack on the right. He should be released immediately.”
The Committee to Protect Journalists on Monday called on Indian authorities to release Zubair “immediately and unconditionally”, and to “stop harassing him in return for his work.”

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