Mon, 04 Dec 2023

New Delhi [India], October 3 (ANI): CPI leader and Rajya Sabha MP Binoy Viswam on Tuesday condemned the raids on journalists associated with the online portal NewsClick office, claiming that Delhi Police raided the residences of several journalists, activists, authors, and satirists and carried out a search and seizure of books, journals, magazines, laptops, and mobile phones, allegedly without any warrant.

He claimed further that Delhi Police gave no clarity on the reasons behind this crackdown and widespread searches and seizures.

Viswam said in a statement that the only connection between the journalists, who were raided, is their well-known critique of the "wrongdoings" of the central government under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and their refusal to fall in line with the dictates of the regime.

The journalists raided have published critical pieces against the Centre on a range of issues including the alleged mishandling of the Manipur crisis, the Adani-Hindenburg "revelations", fake news, alleged saffronisation of the media, the Pegasus snooping issue, and alleged corruption in the Raphael fighter deal, among others.

"The raids conducted today should be seen in the context of journalists targeted for refusing to fall in line with the dictates of this government. They have given rise to concerns over the independence of the press and freedom of speech. Muzzling criticism and curbing the free flow of information are detrimental to democracy," he added.

The CPI national secretary said further, "The Modi government's crackdown on the press has already reduced India to being among the bottom 20 countries on the World Press Freedom Index. Several journalists are in jail under draconian charges for reporting the truth. The BJP's contempt for a democratic society is visible to all. These raids are condemnable and desperate attempts to hide the gross misgovernance, corruption, and failures of this government over the last nine years." (ANI)

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