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Dainik Bhaskar reporter arrested in Haryana for mistake in report related to terrorist

News editor booked by cops, efforts on to nab him
A court granted the reporter bail on furnishing a personal bond of Rs 50,000.

Our Bureau, PTI   |   Chandigarh   |   Published 18.09.21, 05:03 PM

A Dainik Bhaskar journalist was arrested and another booked at Ambala Cantonment in BJP-ruled Haryana for mentioning an “incorrect place” of arrest of a suspected terrorist in a report, prompting the Opposition to allege suppression of the freedom of press.

An FIR had been registered against reporter Sunil Brar and news editor Sandeep Sharma on Thursday, police said. Brar has been arrested.


The two have been booked under IPC sections that 153 (wantonly giving provocation with intent to cause riot), 177 (furnishing false information), 504 (intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of peace) and 505 (2) (statement creating or promoting enmity, hatred or ill will between classes), the police said. The sections attract a maximum five years in jail.

A suspected terrorist was arrested by Punjab police from Mardon Sahib village of Ambala on Wednesday over an alleged tiffin bomb plot. The newspaper headline said: “Punjab police claim arrest of terrorist at Cantt from near IOC depot.” The Dainik Bhaskar, which has reported extensively on Covid mismanagement and faced income tax raids in July, had published a correction the next day.

Station house officer Ambala Canttonment, Vijay Kumar, said the case against the journalists was registered as they had published the news without authentication. Journalists Brar and Sharma have created fear among the masses by publishing false news, he added.

Brar was on Saturday produced in the court of duty magistrate Mukesh Kumar, who granted him bail upon furnishing a personal bond of Rs 50,000.

The Opposition, including the Congress, INLD, Haryana Democratic Front and the BSP, criticised the police action against the journalists.

Congress leader Rohit Jain said the arrest was made against the directions of the Supreme Court. He alleged that the police had not issued any prior notice to the journalist before arresting him.

Chitra Sarwara of the Haryana Democratic Front and Prakash Bharti of the BSP alleged that the police had violated the norms of democracy. It is an attack on the freedom of press, they said.

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