Journalist and HRD
Mr. Nilesh Sharma, a Raipur based journalist who runs a popular satire column titled ‘Ghurwa ke Maati’ on digital platforms, was illegally detained and arrested at around 7.30 pm. on March 2, 2022, by plainclothes officials of the Raipur police. The arrest flouted multiple DK Basu guidelines.
On February 26, 2022, based on a complaint by Congress worker Mr. Khilawan Nisha, the Raipur police registered an FIR against Mr. Sharma at the Civil Lines Police Station. His portal Indiawriters.co.in was also suspended. His illegal arrest was based on FIR.
He was produced in the Raipur sessions court on March 3, 2022, following which he was remanded in judicial custody in Raipur Jail. On March 5, 2022, the police press release stated that they had found objectionable on the HRD’s phone and added additional sections against him. He was transferred to Bilaspur Jail on March 5, 2022, after the addition of new sections against him. His bail plea was rejected by the Raipur sessions court, and he is currently lodged in Bilaspur Jail.
HRDA issued an urgent appeal to the National Human Rights Commission to direct its investigation wing to initiate an immediate, independent, thorough, transparent, effective, and impartial investigation into the arbitrary detention and illegal arrest of the HRD.
We firmly believe that the Chhattisgarh police abused its power and violated the constitutional right to freedom of speech and expression of a well-known journalist for being critical of the state government.