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CPJ Calls for India to Respect Freedom of Journalists Recently Granted Bail

New Delhi, The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) has welcomed the recent bail granted to three journalists in India, urging the Indian government to ensure their freedom and drop all charges against them. These journalists had been held under stringent anti-terror laws, highlighting ongoing concerns about press freedom in the country.

According to Kashmir Media Service, CPJ India Representative Kunal Majumder emphasized the need for the Indian authorities to adhere to the judicial orders and release Aasif Sultan, Gautam Navlakha, and Prabir Purkayastha immediately. The cases of these journalists, particularly that of Sultan who has faced repeated detentions despite multiple bail grants illustrate the severe challenges faced by journalists in India who engage in critical reporting.

Sultan’s ordeal includes several arrests and re-arrests over the years, often under controversial charges, since his initial detention in 2018. The Supreme Court of India has also intervened in the cases of Purkayastha and Navlakha, granting them bail based on procedural deficiencies and unfounded accusations, respectively.

These developments come amid broader scrutiny of India’s use of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) and its impact on press freedom, with CPJ documenting a concerning pattern of journalists being targeted under this law since 2014.

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