By Muslim Mirror Staff
New Delhi: The International Press Institute (IPI), an international press freedom organisation, has called on Indian authorities to release journalist Siddique Kappan, who was arrested in September 2020, when was on the way to a village in Uttar Pradesh’s Hathras district, where a Dalit girl was raped and beaten by some upper caste men.
In a statement, IPI Deputy Director Scott Griffen said that the journalist is being subjected to “unacceptable ill-treatment”
Scott Griffen said that the IPI is extremely concerned that Kappan was targeted and detained due to his journalistic activity. The statement pointed out that there is no evidence to support UP Police’s claims. Hence, the charges against Kappan must be dropped immediately.
The IPI statement added that Kappan’s lawyer; his wife, Raihana; as well as an Indian journalist working on the case who requested anonymity all say that Kappan was on his way to the town of Hathras in order to interview the victim’s family – that he was simply trying to do his job as a journalist.
“He is a Malayali Muslim and a journalist. That is a deadly combination in this country”, Raihana Kappan said. “Kappan is a journalist and that is most likely part of why he is in custody. Journalists should be able to talk to people from all walks of life and do independent journalism without being targeted by the authorities”, Kappan’s lawyer, Wills Mathew, said.