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Criminal case registered against journalist

Image Credit :- The Wire

Anoop Kundu

Journalist and Human Rights Defender

Haryana

 

HRDA has issued an urgent appeal to the National Human Rights Commission of India on September 25, 2019, regarding the criminal case registered against Mr. Anoop Kundu, a journalist, on September 8, 2019 for exposing irregularities and mishandling of grains at a government storage facility in Haryana. Mr. Kundu has been a journalist for more than seven years now, covering issues of socio-political concerns and is currently associated with STV Haryana News. He has impactfully reported on mismanagement and corruption, such as in the private-public collusion in healthcare in Haryana and his report on the condition of Haryana government buses has led to improvement in services.

On July 18, 2019, Mr. Kundu telecasted a ground report he has prepared  exposing serious irregularities and mishandling of grains at the government storage facility of the State Food Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs Department in Uklana in district Hisar of Haryana. Mr. Kundu confirmed that the video footage board clearly indicated the place of the incident as it showed a board on which the department’s name is written. He also informed that when the District Food Supplies Controller came to check the stock of wheat on the same day when he was shooting this video, who had been shown wet and damaged wheat by the officials.

A month and a half later, on September 8, 2019 , an FIR was filed at Uklana Police Station in Hisar district, allegedly on a complaint by the Assistant Food and Supplies Officer, Hisar, Mr. Sandeep Chahal. The complainant alleged Mr. Kundu had shown fake footage on the telecast on July 18, 2019 on STV Haryana News channel. The complaint mentioned that the place showcased was not Uklana warehouse and Mr. Kundu was accused of intentionally airing the fake story to discredit and defame the department's reputation and the public image of its officials. The Haryana police booked Mr.Kundu on charges of trespassing and defamation under Sections 451, 465 and 500 of the Indian Penal Code.

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