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Mohammed Zubair co-founder of Alt News.
Mohammed Zubair co-founder of Alt News.

Mohd Zubair moves Delhi HC against his Police remand

ANI | Updated: Jun 30, 2022 15:51 IST

New Delhi [India], June 30 (ANI): Alt News co-founder Mohammed Zubair, who was arrested in connection with an "objectionable" tweet on Thursday, moved the Delhi High Court challenging the police remand granted by the trial court.
Advocate Vrinda Grover on Thursday mentioned the matter before the vacation bench of the Delhi High Court, which was allowed and the matter will be heard tomorrow (Friday).
On Tuesday, the Delhi Police got 4-day remand of Zubair. While seeking his remand, the Delhi Police lawyer said, "We have arrested him as he was not cooperating during the investigation. When he joined the probe, all applications were deleted from the mobile phone. He came with a blank phone."
Delhi Police also said that nowadays a trend is going on Twitter that in order to increase followers on the social media platform, they opt to make objectionable remarks by targeting a community. Police said various other FIRs have also been registered against him in different matters.
On Tuesday, Mohammed Zubair's counsel Advocate Vrinda Grover told the court that the photo alleged to be edited by him is actually from an old Hindi film.
Advocate Vrinda Grover alongwith Advocate Soutik Banerjee submitted that there is no editing that the accused or anyone else has done. "Allegations against him are totally baseless. His phones are with them (Delhi Police). The image, which has been shown as a reason for arresting comes from a Hindi cinema," Grover said.
Grover (on behalf of Zubair) further submitted in the trial court that, "Zubair is a fact-checker. He exposes lies on social media. That's why many people dislike it. He lives in Bangalore. He was called to Delhi for questioning. The notice was given for some other case and the arrest took place in another case."
According to the Delhi Police, the probe is based on a tweet that was made in 2018. "Now, the Police are asking for Zubair's old mobile phone which is used in 2018. It's lost now and I also reported for that and I have a lost article report, submitted by Mohammed Zubair Lawyer."
Mohammed Zubair was produced on Tuesday by Delhi Police before the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate of Patiala House court. He was arrested on Monday in connection with an objectionable tweet
"Mohammed Zubair's objectionable tweet led to a Twitter storm with hate speeches, detrimental to communal harmony. Two things including technical gadgets and intention were important. He was evasive on both, the phone was formatted. This formed grounds for his arrest," said KPS Malhotra, DCP IFSO.
"If someone is booked in several cases it's our right to question him in all. Judiciary is involved, custody is given, bail is not granted, and there must be some substance to the case. Calling it politically motivated doesn't stand right. We'll ask for more remand," said KPS Malhotra, DCP IFSO (Intelligence Fusion & Strategic Operations) unit of the Delhi Police.
DCP Malhotra said: "If you endorse a view on social media, it becomes your view. Retweeting and saying I don't know, doesn't stand here. The Responsibility is yours. Time does not matter, you only have to re-tweet and it becomes new. The police action was taken on basis of when the matter came to our cognizance."
The FIR against Zubair was lodged on June 20 based on the complaint filed by the Duty Officer of the IFSO unit of the Delhi Police Special Cell which tackles cyber crimes.
According to duty officer Arun Kumar, while he was monitoring social media, he saw a tweet shared by a person with the Twitter name 'Hanuman Bhakt' and Twitter ID @balajikijai. The shared tweet was Mohammad Zubair's and contained "objectionable" words
The screenshot of the board is from a Hindi movie."These words and the picture found to be used by Mohammed Zubair @zoo_bear against a particular religious community and are highly provocative and more than sufficient to incite feeling of hatred amongst people which can be detrimental for maintenance of public tranquility in the society. Transmission and publication of such posts has been deliberately done Mohammed Zubair @zoo_bear through electronic media to insult the religious feelings of a particular community with intent to provoke breach of peace which attracts offence under Section 153-A and 295..From the contents of the post from Twitter handle Mohammed Zubair @zoo_bear, offence 153-A and 295 is made out," the FIR further stated.
Zubair was booked under Sections 153A (promotion of enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language) and 295A (Deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), Delhi Police said. (ANI)