Chhattisgarh journalist booked for Facebook post saying tribals killing each other
A journalist based out of Chhattisgarh’s Surguja has been booked for provocation and criminal intimidation over a Facebook post.
A case was registered against Manish Soni for a post on Facebook that tribals were killing each other. Chhattisgarh police said Soni was booked under section 153 (A), 153 (B) and 504 (B) on Sunday and investigation has started.
“On the complaint of one Alok Dubey, a case has been registered but no arrest has been made. We have started investigation and further action will be taken. The journalist will be given a chance to submit his views,” Surguja Range inspector general of police K L Dangi said.
Soni is a reporter of a regional channel operating in Surguja district. On March 25, he shared the photographs of personnel of district reserve guard (DRG) who were killed in a Maoist attack on March 18, and wrote on Facebook: “Marne valon kee jaati dekhein aur maarne valon kee pehchaan hone dein sab ek hi jaati ke honge .. Ab marvaane valon ko samjhiye ..jawaab mil jaayega.. ab inhe saheej kahke shaadat ko salaam kijiye aur agali baar kee ghatna ka intezaar kijiye.. adivasi ko adivasi se ladakar hi jungle pe kabza kiya sakta hai …(The caste of those who died and the killers ...will be the same. Now understand the people behind the killings and you find the answers. Call them martyrs, salute them and wait for the next incident. The jungle could only be encroached upon by making tribals fight each other).” Soni was unavailable for comment despite repeated attempts. Interestingly, Chhattisgarh government has set up a committee to draft Chhattisgarh Protection of Mediapersons Act for the protection of journalists working in the state.
“Police have registered a case against Soni because he was constantly writing about custodial death of a Pankaj Baik,” said Kamal Shukla, one of the journalists who had initially demanded the law for the protection of journalists in the state.