'Thank govt for opportunity to report from Tihar': Journalist Mandeep Punia writes notes on his leg in jail

Journalist Mandeep Punia, who was kept in Tihar jail for three days before being released on Wednesday, said he prepared notes in jail by writing on his leg and will soon release a report on farmers kept in the prison in Delhi.

Punia, who was covering farmers' protest at Singhu border, was detained by police on Saturday. He was officially arrested on Sunday and produced before a court which sent him to a 14-day judicial custody in a case FIR registered under various sections including 186 (Obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions), 353 (Assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty) and 332 (Voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from his duty) of IPC.

A Delhi court granted him bail on Tuesday and he was finally released on Wednesday.

Speaking to reporters following his release, Mandeep said he got the chance to meet jailed farmers in Tihar and took notes on his legs.

“I had written notes on my legs while inside the prison. I wrote the names of those I met and what they told me o that I can write a report,” he said.

“I could report from Tihar jail also thanks to this government. They gave me an opportunity by putting me inside,” he added.

Earlier on Tuesday, the court in its order said it was well settled legal principle of law that "bail is a rule and jail is an exception".

"Hence, considering the totality of facts and circumstances of the present case, submissions on behalf of both the parties as well as keeping in view the period of detention of the accused in judicial custody, he is admitted to bail on furnishing bail bond in a sum of Rs 25,000 along with one sound surety in the like amount," the judge said.

Punia had told the court that he was innocent and was falsely implicated in the case. "The offences as alleged in the present FIR are not made out against the accused. The accused is a freelance journalist and was carrying out his duties along with another journalists at the protest site of Singhu Border, Delhi," his lawyer had told the court on Monday.

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Free Press Journal