Jaipur: Almost a fortnight after an FIR was registered against two journalists including Lokendra Singh, the media advisor of Sachin Pilot, for allegedly spreading Fake News and criminal conspiracy, a single bench of Rajasthan High Court on Friday provided relief to him. The bench has sought the case diary from the investigating police officer and also stayed any coercive action against him.
Singh and Sharat Kumar of a private news channel were booked by Jaipur Police for allegedly putting out fake news in August during the power tussle between chief minister Ashok Gehlot and his former deputy Pilot. An FIR was also lodged against the two at Vidhayakpuri Police Station on October 1. Singh handles Pilot’s press releases on social media.
SS Hora, counsel for Singh said, “ It is evident that filing of FIR is an endeavour of the state government to curb reporting of fake news by the media. Also, the incident according to the government, took place in August. The petitioner can’t be arrested for false allegations.”
Justice Govardhan Bardhar directed police to ensure no coercive action be taken against the petitioner and has also sought the case dairy in this regard.
FIR was filed under Sections 505 (1) and (2) (statement conducing to public mischief), 120 B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code and Section 76 of the Information Technology Act. “Section 505(1) deals says whoever makes, publishes or circulates any statement, rumour or report with an intent to cause alarm to the public or to any section of public whereby any person may be induced to commit offence. So, in this case no such thing has taken place,” Hora added.
In the FIR, police had accused the duo of fabricating a news report that illegal phone tapping of Congress MLAs and ministers who were staying in a hotel in Jaisalmer at that time.
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