Ground Report | New Delhi: Journalist Shyam Meera Singh and some other activists booked under Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) by Tripura Police have moved the Supreme Court seeking quashing of the FIR registered against them.
Earlier, Shyam Meera Singh had informed through his Twitter handle that Tripura Police has imposed UAPA on him for writing only three words on the microblogging platform, “Tripura is burning.”
He shared screenshots of an email from Twitter, which said that the social media giant had received a request from Tripura Police to take action against his account. They said ‘Tripura gov. has asked Twitter to take action on his account but they refused to do so. Because Twitter strongly believes in defending and respecting the voice of its users.’
Reporters Without Borders on Monday said it “strongly condemns” the investigation against journalists whose “only crime was covering up the recent attacks against mosques in the northeastern state of Tripura”. The Editors Guild of India demanded an inquiry into the riots “instead of punishing journalists and civil society activists”.
The Tripura Police investigation also drew criticism from political opponents of Modi, including Congress party’s main rival Rahul Gandhi. “Speaking that #TripuraIsBurning is a call for corrective action. But the BJP’s favorite cover-up strategy is shooting the messenger. Truth cannot be silenced with #UAPA,” he tweeted.
Meanwhile, UAPA notices were also sent to Supreme Court lawyers Amit Srivastava, Ansar Indori, Mukesh Kumar and Ehtesham Hashmi. And, Tripura Police mentioned that they imposed UAPA on advocates because they posted inflammatory posts on social media. Lawyers booked under the UAPA conducted a fact-finding investigation into the communal violence in Tripura before putting their findings on social media.
Tripura Police also asked Twitter to suspend the accounts of those on whom they had imposed UAPA. Journalist Shyam Meera Singh shared some screenshots of the email received from Twitter. In the email, Twitter informed Shyam that Tripura Police asked him to suspend his account for his tweets. However, Twitter did not take any action as they believe in defending and respecting the voice of their users.