Global media watchdog calls on UP police to quash FIR against Newslaundry journalist

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By Muslim Mirror Staff

New Delhi: Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), a US-based organisation, has called on authorities in Uttar Pradesh to drop criminal investigations into journalists Nidhi Suresh, Manoj Shukla, and Yashwant Singh, and cease harassing members of the press over their work.

The Sadar Bazar police in Uttar Pradesh’s Shahjahanpur have registered an FIR against Newslaundry journalist Nidhi Suresh after she reported on a woman named Ayesha Alvi who had petitioned the Delhi High Court on being “harassed” by the media after her converted to Islam. Reporter Manoj and the editor of another web portal, Bhadas Media, have also been named in the same FIR.

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“While criminal defamation codes should never be used against journalists, it is especially galling to see such laws wielded by fellow members of the press,” said Steven Butler, CPJ’s Asia program coordinator in Washington, D.C. “Uttar Pradesh authorities should drop their investigations into journalists Nidhi Suresh, Manoj Shukla, and Yashwant Singh, and India should reform its defamation statutes so that disputes are handled by civil and not criminal law,” the CPJ said.

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