Vague allegations leveled in FIR and misuse of anti-terrorism laws to suppress dissent and undermine
Delhi Police has registered an FIR against Newsclick founder Prabir Purkayastha and others.
The FIR contains vague allegations without disclosing any specific offence, including terrorism.
The FIR alleges offenses such as conspiracy to undermine national security, disrupting parliamentary elections, creating disaffection against the government and disrupting essential services.
The FIR includes provisions of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) and penal provisions related to conspiracy and promoting enmity between different groups.
The FIR does not mention any direct illegal activity or terrorist act.
It mentioned that foreign money was illegally brought into India by forces hostile to the country to create disaffection against the government and disrupt the sovereignty, territorial integrity, unity and security of India.
The FIR mentions a 'conspiracy' based on alleged email exchanges to show Arunachal Pradesh and Kashmir as "not part of India".
It also mentioned efforts to prolong the farmers' protest of 2020-21 and disrupt services and essential supplies.
The police are using the money sent to Newsclick by American businessman Neville Roy Singham to make a case that “Chinese” money is being used for propaganda and illegal activities.
UAPA (Unlawful Activities Prevention Act) is being misused to criminalize people for their thoughts and actions.
The use of UAPA is a strategy to prolong the imprisonment of dissenters and send a chilling message to the media fraternity.
The ruling BJP may use the “Chinese conspiracy” theory for electoral gains in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.
There should be a separate investigation into the creation of shell companies by telecom companies for funding terrorism.
The police mention of a lawyer's involvement in creating a legal network to defend these companies suggests the possible criminalization of legal services.
The current regime's misuse of anti-terrorism laws and invocation of national security sentiments is weakening individual and media rights.