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Two AI staffers held for FB posts demand action against cops

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, November 26, 2012
First Published: 12:16 IST(26/11/2012) | Last Updated: 01:41 IST(27/11/2012)

Following the Palghar Facebook row, two Air India (AI) employees, Mayank Sharma and KVJ Rao, who were arrested in May for their Facebook posts criticising politicians, have written to Mumbai police commissioner Satyapal Singh, seeking action against the policemen who booked them.


Senior crime branch officials said they had received no communication about this from the commissioner’s office. On May 11, Mumbai crime branch’s cyber cell arrested the two AI employees for allegedly posting derogatory remarks on Facebook against government officials, politicians, the national flag, judicial institutions and leaders of a rival union in AI. The duo, employed as AI cabin crew, was arrested on the basis of a complaint registered by another AI staffer.

Officials said the AI cabin crew association was run by two unions, which were squabbling over who the association’s next president should be, and the two accused, who belong to one of the unions, started posting derogatory remarks against the rival group. When another AI employee saw their posts, he got in touch with the cyber police.

The duo was arrested under section 66A (sending offensive messages through communication services) and 67 (publishing of information that is obscene in electronic form) of the Information Technology Act.

Nandkumar More, senior police inspector of the cyber cell, said he was on leave and did not remember the status of the case, which was being investigated by a colleague. Despite repeated attempts, Singh could not be contacted.

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