Is Congress muzzling the voice of media in Rajasthan? Is the state government keen to suppress the voice of journalists by leaving them scared?
These seem to be the in-questions being discussed in the journalists’ lobby every now and then, however, after the journalist, Aman Chopra case came in, these questions are being frequently exchanged.
Recently, Rajasthan police lodged an FIR against Aman Chopra as he allegedly claimed in his show that a centuries-old religious place in Alwar, Rajasthan was demolished to avenge the Delhi Jahangirpuri case.
After this, three cases were registered against him in Rajasthan for inciting religious violence.
A case of religious violence was registered against Aman due to which Rajasthan Police went on a lookout for the journalist. For two consecutive days, Rajasthan Police went to his flat located at Arihant Arden Society, Greater Noida West.
Meanwhile, the Rajasthan High Court upheld the arrest of journalist Chopra. A single bench of Judge Dinesh Mehta of Jodhpur Bench of Rajasthan High Court started hearing in the matter at 12 noon on Wednesday. During the hearing, which lasted for about 22 minutes, Justice Mehta heard the side of the special advocate appointed by the government and the advocates of Aman Chopra. After hearing both sides, Justice Mehta’s court upheld the stay on the arrest of Aman Chopra, leaving the state government red-faced.
During the hearing, the court asked the public prosecutor why arrest is necessary? The court asked, why do you need custodial investigation of a journalist? What about the party’s representatives in the debate?
It is worth mentioning that FIR was registered against Aman Chopra in different police stations of Alwar, Bundi and Dungarpur districts of the state and the Jaipur Bench of the Rajasthan High Court had already stayed the arrest till further orders on the petition presented against the FIR registered in Alwar and Bundi districts.
The High Court, meanwhile, gave a historic order, directing that Aman Chopra cannot be arrested in the case of FIR registered.
Chopra on April 22 in the TV show ‘Desh Nahi Jhukne Denge’ called the action of demolition of the temple in Rajgarh in Alwar district in Rajasthan as revenge for the action taken in Jahangirpuri in Delhi.
Meanwhile, this is not the first time when the Gehlot government acted as dictator against media.
In 2019, media had boycotted assembly proceedings of Rajasthan government in the wake of several restrictions imposed on them.
Playing down the media boycott, Speaker CP Joshi said, “If journalists come, they are welcome. If they do not come, then also they are welcome. The ‘boycott’ just doesn’t matter as we are live on YouTube.”
However, officials confirmed Organiser that all cameras for live streaming are headed toward Congress MLAs so opposition protest cannot be seen by the citizens of the desert state.
In fact, they were caught in their own web recently when state parliamentary affairs minister termed Rajasthan as Mardon ka Pradesh for increasing rape incidents. The entire government was left red faced as people from different corner watched the leader making the shameless statement.
Meanwhile the relations between media and Congress govt are still not congenial as it is common to see journalists standing under open sun in the sweltering sun with their cameras outside the Rajasthan Assembly as they are not being issued passes. None of the cameramen are allowed to enter the premises. Selected lobby of journalists featuring lopsided stories in the local media, however, are given entry, said sources.
The head of the same government who ill-treats media then goes in public and says ‘media is under pressure and democracy is in danger under BJP government’. Isn’t it an irony, he questions.