'The Wire' Founding Editor, Siddharth Varadarajan
'The Wire' Founding Editor, Siddharth Varadarajan
File Photo

Lucknow: After lodging FIRs against six senior journalists including Rajdeep Sardesai and Mrinal Pande, the Uttar Pradesh police have now registered an FIR at Rampur against Siddharth Varadarajan, the Founding Editor of the news website ‘The Wire’.

The FIR has been registered against Varadarajan on a complaint filed by Sanju Turaha, a resident of Rampur. The complainant alleged that a report published in the website distorted facts about the death of a farmer Navreet Singh, who got killed when a speeding tractor overturned on him during the July 26 Republic Day farmers' tractor rally.

In the report, the father of the deceased was quoted as saying that one of the doctors, who performed the autopsy, told him that the body carried a bullet mark. The Founding Editor of the website had tweeted that report on Saturday.

Soon after the report was published and tweeted, Rampur District Magistrate A.K. Singh contradicted the report with a signed statement from the CMO, Dr Mohmmed Zubair, and two other doctors -- namely, Dr Dashrath Singh and Dr Manoj Kumar Shukla. The joint statement claimed that the autopsy of Navreet Singh was done by a panel of three doctors on January 27 at 2 AM.

“As per the rules, a videography of the entire autopsy process was done. The report was handed over to the SP and the SHO of the concerned police station in a sealed envelope. None of the doctors talked to the media or anyone. As per the rules, they can only give statements in the court, if summoned,” said the statement.

Attaching the joint statement, the DM Rampur tweeted in reply to Varadarajan's tweet: “We ardently request you to please let’s be sticking to facts and facts only. We hope our request will be sincerely taken up by you. Thank you.”

Failing to get any response from the publisher of that article, an FIR was lodged against Varadarajan under Sections 153B and 505 (2).

Earlier, FIRs were filed against senior journalists Rajdeep Sardesai, Mrinal Pandey, Zafar Agha, and three others by the Noida police for tweeting 'distorted facts' to incite violence.

(To receive our E-paper on whatsapp daily, please click here. We permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)

Free Press Journal