A democracy can be gauged from the freedom the media enjoys in that country

It is often said that the heath of a democracy can be gauged from the freedom the media enjoys in that country .in 2019, the world press free Dom index ranked India at 140 out of a total of 180 countries in the world .it's a same of gigantic proportions .in the last five years apart from the institutional collapse, the electronic media has been dented so much that no one is surprised anymore if most of the mainstream news channel is more of a mouthpiece  of the Modi Government 's own Spokespersons . As expected, Modi 2.0 has begun on similar lines 8th June 2019, the Uttar Prades police picked up a freelance journalist, Prashant Kanojia, from his house in Delhi for posting a tweet a few days back about a news item on a woman claiming that she was in a relationship with Yogi Adityanath, the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh .in response ,the Up police filed a 'so Moto 'FIR against him for the alleged offense of defamation under Section 500, Indian Penal Code, 1860 and Section 66 of the Information Technology Act 2000 for allegedly maligning the image of the UP CM.

freedom the media
freedom the media

The arrest was completely arbitrary, since the defamation offense was noncognisable in nature, ie ,the accused could not be arrested without a warrant ,and the proceedings cannot start unless the Magistrates takes cognizance of the complaints Further Prashant Kanojja was arrested In Delhi and taken to Uttar Pradesh without a transits arrant or without being produced before a local magistrates in Delhi . The entire procedure was illegal and completely unlawful. Even when he was produced before magistrates in Up, the magistrates sent him to remand for 11days, which was very unusual Letter

The police also added another offense to the FIR for allegedly disturbing public tranquillity
On 10th June 2019, Prashant Kanojia 's wife, jagisha Arora filed a habeas corpus petition in the Supreme Court stating that his detention was constating that his detention was completely illegal and arbitrary, albeit under a judicial order of magistrate. On 11th June 2019, The supreme court speech and expression exercised by Prashant Kanojia and directed him to be released on bail immediately. the UP Government  argued that his release would be construed as an endorsement of his fundamental rights to personal liberty

This order follows the earlier case of Priyanka Sharma,the BJP worker from West Bengal, who arrested by the West Bengal Government for sharing a photo of the Chief Minister, Mamata Banerjee, which was alleged  to be defamatory release then also .all these incidents indicate that the Supreme Court's jurisprudence on freedom of speech cases is quite strong .but the State violates the same every time it arrests a person for a tweet or a post

Clearly, the judicial diktat is not being adhered at all by the Executive .it appears that besides Kanojia, the UP police arrested two  other media persons, Anuj Shukla and like Sinkha, the estimation lives which had telecasted the woman 's interview claiming to be in an alleged relationship with the Up chief Minister This kind of complete arbitrary and unlawful behavior is not new at all in the context of the UP police

It is high time that the Supreme Court clearly lays down that the police cannot arrest a person for her social media posts, and not deal with individual cases. Strict action should be taken against all the errant police officials who follow the illegal orders of their superiors or who are involved in such unlawful arrests. India 's already one of the lowest on the press freedom index and let's not slide further


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