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UAPA case: Delhi court dismisses NewsClick founder’s plea seeking release of electronic devices

IANS logo Reported By IANS |
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New Delhi, Dec 18 (IANS) A Delhi court has dismissed an application moved by NewsClick founder-editor Prabir Purkayastha seeking release of his electronic devices seized in a case lodged under the provisions of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.

On December 1, the court had extended till December 22 the judicial custody of Purkayastha and Human Resources head Amit Chakravarty.

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Special Judge Hardeep Kaur of Patiala House Courts dismissed the plea saying the ground was not enough to allow the application at this stage.


Both Purkayastha and Chakravarty had moved the court seeking release of electronic devices seized by police and bail, respectively.

On November 17, Chakravarty’s counsel had argued that he has only 0.09 per cent share in the organisation, and has no role in journalism or management, and the police had raised questions on the maintainability of the bail application.

On October 25, the special judge had sent the duo to police custody after police told the court that they have the right to seek further custody of Purkayastha and Chakravarty, and that they need to confront them with protected witnesses and electronic material recovered.

They were produced before court on expiry of their five-day judicial custody.

Additional Public Prosecutor (APP) for police Atul Srivastava had told the court that they have the right to seek further custody and therefore, they were exercising the same.

The Special Cell of Delhi Police had arrested Purkayastha and Chakravarty on October 3. A day after their arrest, the special judge had sent them to seven days’ police custody on October 4. Both then moved the High Court challenging their police remand, which was upheld by the High Court.

The duo had also taken the matter to the Supreme Court against the dismissal of their petitions challenging police remand, and on October 19, the apex court had issued notices to Delhi Police on the petitions.

Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, representing Purkayastha, had earlier argued before the High Court that “all facts are false and not a penny came from China.”

On October 3, in a statement regarding the search, seizure and detentions carried out in connection with the UAPA case registered by the Special Cell, the Delhi Police had said that a total of 37 male suspects were questioned at the office premises, while nine female suspects were questioned at their residences.

The police said that digital devices, documents, etc., were seized or collected for examination. The Special Cell had registered an FIR in connection with the case on August 17 under different sections of the UAPA and the Indian Penal Code against NewsClick.

In August, a ‘New York Times’ investigation had accused NewsClick of being an organisation funded by a network linked with US millionaire Neville Roy Singham, to allegedly promote Chinese propaganda.

–IANS

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(This report is auto-generated from IANS news service. 'Main Media' holds no responsibility for its content.)

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