The Supreme Court has agreed to hear plea seeking dismissal of cases registered by the Tripura police against over 100 persons under Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA).
The top court has agreed to fix a date for hearing the petition that seeks quashing of FIRs filed by Tripura police under UAPA for social media posts.
Tripura police booked 102 persons, including journalist Shyam Meera Singh, under UAPA for social media posts on communal violence.
Moreover, the Tripura police also booked four Supreme Court lawyers under UAPA, who were part of a fact-finding team.
The Tripura police also served notices to the authorities of Twitter, Facebook and YouTube to freeze accounts of the persons who have been booked under UAPA.
“These lawyers were part of the fact-finding team which investigated these incidents in Tripura. Social media users who posted messages like ‘Tripura is burning’ have also been charged under UAPA,” advocate Prashant Bhushan said while addressing a three-judge Supreme Court bench headed by chief justice NV Ramana.
Meanwhile, the Press Club of India (PCI) India has strongly condemned the Tripura government for police action against journalist as well other innocent citizens for social media posts on communal violence in the state.
The PCI in a statement on Wednesday said it was shocked that the Tripura government is ‘arm-twisting, beating up and arresting media persons along with scores of innocent citizens during communal violence in the state.’
“At this point of time when state machinery is blindfolded and deliberately taking no cognizance of unlawful acts of perpetrators, PCI demands that the Supreme Court take suo moto notice of communal cauldron being ignited in Tripura,” said PCI president Umakant Lakhera and secretary-general Vinay Kumar.
A mosque was vandalized, and two shops were set ablaze at Chamtilla in Tripura during a rally by Vishva Hindu Parishad on October 26, called to protest the communal violence in neighbouring Bangladesh.
Three houses and a few shops, reportedly owned by Muslims, were also ransacked in nearby Rowa Bazar.
The Tripura government had on October 29 alleged that a group from outside with vested interests had hatched a conspiracy against the administration to create unrest in Tripura and malign its image by uploading fake photographs of a burning mosque on social media after the October 26 incident.