16:09 GMT12 August 2020
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    New Delhi (Sputnik): While granting bail to arrested journalist Prashant Kanojia, India’s highest court also said it shouldn’t be viewed as if it approves of the journalist’s social media tweets. Five people, including Kanojia, have been arrested since 8 June for posting or sharing the unverified post that allegedly defamed Uttar Pradesh.

    The Supreme Court of India on Tuesday ordered the immediate release of journalist Prashant Kanojia, who was arrested for sharing a social media post criticising Chief Minster Yogi Adityanath in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh.

    While hearing a petition filed by Jagisha Arora, wife of arrested journalist Prashant Kanojia, the Bench comprising Justices Indira Banerjee and Ajay Rastogi made strong remarks against the police and turned down the submission of the Uttar Pradesh State that the petitioner should approach the lower court or High Court for bail.

    READ MORE: Arrest of Indian Journo for Posting 'Objectionable' Video Against BJP Sparks Row

    Kanojia was taken into custody for sharing a video of a Kanpur-based woman making allegations against Chief Minister Adityanath, an influential political leader from the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party.

    The Supreme Court said the order of Judicial Magistrate remanding him to 11 days of judicial custody was inappropriate.

    "The court need not comment on the contents of the tweets. The question is: should the petitioner have been deprived of his liberty over them. The answer to that is, prima facie in the negative. Fundamental Rights under Article 19 and 21 are non-negotiable," the court said while ordering the immediate release of the arrested journalist.

    READ MORE:Indian Government Criticised for Jailing Journalist

    The Editors Guild of India, a body of Indian journalists, had condemned the arrest of Kanojia, condemning it as a "Brazen misuse of power".



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