Police files closure report in case against scribe Rahul Kulkarni

Mumbai: The Bandra police have told a magistrate court that upon investigation they have found that wrong circumstances led to the filing of the FIR against Marathi TV journalist Rahul Kulkarni in the Bandra migrant workers gathering case and have sought that he be released as an accused in the case.

They sought to consider it a C Summary or a closure report against him as investigation did not yield any result.

The police said that when they questioned Kulkarni he told them that he had read a news report of an English daily about the railways collecting data regarding stranded migrants and had found out more and got to know that the railways was considering starting special trains to reach the migrants their states. He had confirmed the information with senior railway officials before it was aired on April 14 in the morning between 9 am and 11.30 am on the news channel.

Further, the police told the court in its report that witnesses had said they had neither heard of nor seen his news broadcast before gathering at the location.

Importantly, it states that Kulkarni in his news had not specified the timing of the special trains or the location from where they would start and had clearly stated that the proposal is only being considered at that point and a decision is yet to be taken.

Kulkarni’s advocate Shriganesh Sawalkar said that the FIR was filed against Kulkarni by the police without verifying facts and he was arrested. “Everyone knows that out-station trains don’t start from Bandra, even those who had gathered knew that,” he said.

The report said that some witnesses had stated that they had gathered there due to videos they had seen of Vinay Dubey. The police have said that Dubey gave repeated calls on social media for migrants to gather at their nearest railway station and pressurize the government to start special trains for them.

On Apr 14, around 1,000 to 1,200 migrant workers had gathered outside Bandra station demanding for trains to send them home. The police use mild force to disperse the crowd. Kulkarni was one of those booked for spreading misinformation which led to the situation.

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