Siddique Kappan released from prison

To begin with, Indian journalist Siddique Kappan has been released from prison after more than two years after he was arrested while traveling to cover an alleged rape. He was arrested in Uttar Pradesh in October 2020. There, a young Dalit woman died after being allegedly raped by her four upper caste men. The incident sparked protests in India.

Meanwhile, Police accused Mr. Kappan of complicity in causing law and order problems and inciting violence, charges Mr. Kappan denied. Three other men who were in the car with him that day were also charged with similar charges.

No freedom press in “democratic” India

Furthermore, Mr Kappan’s arrest was condemned by press freedom activists who fear India is becoming increasingly dangerous for journalists. Last year, the country fell eight places to 150th in the Press Freedom Index of 180 countries compiled by Reporters Without Borders.

Moreover, “Violence against journalists, politically partisan media and concentration of media ownership all point to press freedom at stake in the “world’s largest democracy”, The book said. In one case, he was released by the Supreme Court of India in this September, and in the second case, the Allahabad High Court granted him bail in December.

Kappan was tortured in prison

However, it took more than a month before he was released due to delays in the procedures. After being released from Lucknow city jail on Thursday, Mr Kappan said he would continue to fight the charges against him. “I will continue my journalism. I will not sit idle. After all, I am a journalist. Where should I go?” he told his Anant Zanane of BBC Hindi district of Uttar Pradesh.

Besides, after his arrest, he was physically and mentally tortured by the police and accused of being guilty. His family also claimed that authorities did not allow him access to diabetes medication. Police denied the charges.They allege Mr. Kappan and his associates are members of the Popular Front of India (PFI) also denies this.

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