Coronavirus Outbreak: News portal founder arrested in Coimbatore over ‘false, provocative' reports on govt's COVID-19 relief work
The founder of an English news portal has been arrested here on charges of carrying 'false' and 'provocative' reports against the local administration and government over COVID-19 relief works, police said on Friday.
Coimbatore: The founder of an English news portal has been arrested here on charges of carrying "false" and "provocative" reports against the local administration and government over COVID-19 relief works, police said on Friday.
Andrew Sam Rajapandian, who runs the 'Simplicity' portal, was arrested on Thursday on a complaint from a city corporation official and produced before a magistrate who remanded him to judicial custody, they said.
Coimbatore CPI-M MP PR Natarajan condemned the arrest of Pandiarajan.
Journalist associations of Coimbatore and Tirupur were among those who condemned the arrest, saying it was against freedom of the press.
Police said cases were registered against the portal on Wednesday under Indian Penal Code Sections 189 (Threat of injury to public servant) 505 (i) (statements conducing to public mischief) and Section 3 of the Epidemic Diseases Act on Wednesday.
Earlier, a journalist and a photographer of the portal were questioned for over four hours in connection with the case, police said.
According to the FIR, the portal had carried reports that government healthcare professionals and workers involved in the fight against coronavirus were not given proper food, and employees under Public Distribution System were siphoning off the relief fund meant for the poor.
The portal was also posting these "totally false" reports in various social media, including Twitter, WhatsApp, and Facebook, against the government which was "struggling to fight" the coronavirus spread.
These reports were "provocative" and can turn the workers against the government and upset the entire PDS activities, it added.
COVID-19 transmission: Study shows bars and restaurants can act as hotspots, here's what to keep in mind
Various countries of the world, including India, are lifting restrictions on travel and gatherings bit by bit.
Indian white sugar exports at near standstill as lockdown bites; output in Thailand plunges more than 40% this season
Even before the lockdown, Indian industry officials had cut 2019/20 sugar export estimates to 4.5 million tonnes as a drop in prices had made overseas sales unprofitable.
COVID-19 may trigger and worsen obsessive compulsive disorder in children and adolescents, new study finds
While there is currently more research regarding the psychological impact of COVID-19 among adults, studies about the effects of the pandemic on younger populations are scarce