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Rajasthan telephone tapping case: High Court stays coercive motion towards Sachin Pilot’s media supervisor

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Written by Hamza Khan | Jaipur | October 16, 2020 4:16:09 pm Singh had approached the Rajasthan High Court final week in search of quashing of the FIR lodged towards him in reference to the telephone tapping case. (Express picture: Rohit Jain Paras)Granting interim reduction to former deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot’s aide Lokendra Singh, the Rajasthan High Court Friday stayed anycoercive motion by police within the telephone tapping case towards him.
Singh had approached the Rajasthan High Court final week in search of quashing of the FIR lodged towards him in reference to the telephone tapping case. Hearing the case, a bench of Justice Goverdhan Bardhar stayed any coercive motion towards Singh and directed the police to place up a case diary on subsequent listening to.
The case pertains to the state police’s FIR on October 1 towards Lokendra Singh and Aaj Tak’s Jaipur-based editor Sharat Kumar, accusing them of spreading “misleading and fake news” concerning tapping of telephones of MLAs sequestered at a lodge in Jaisalmer.
On August 7, the Pilot camp had accused the CM of tapping the telephones of no less than six MLAs belonging to his personal camp staying at Hotel Suryagarh in Jaisalmer, with the assistance of the police. It had additionally shared a doc purportedly displaying a listing of calls made to the MLAs.
“The court has said no coercive action will be taken against Lokendra. We argued that the offence is simply not made out. Under IPC 505 (1) [whoever publishes any statement, rumour or report] you can’t have an FIR, because it is non-cognisable. Under 505 (2) [statements creating or promoting enmity, hatred or ill-will between classes], you can file an FIR, but no offence is made out,” Singh’s lawyer S S Hora stated.
Since 505 (2) requires {that a} assertion results in enmity and thus makes for an offence, “but between August 7 and till date, there has been no offence, no incitement, hence it falls completely short,” Hora stated. “Second, I said that the same news was carried by News 18…[the FIR] is a method of curbing freedom of speech and it cannot be permitted,” he added.
Apart from IPC sections 505 (1) and (2), the FIR was lodged below 120 B (felony conspiracy), together with Section 76 of the IT Act. Under the latter, an digital machine linked to any violation below the Act “shall be liable to confiscation”.
Lokendra Singh stated: “This is a relief and indeed justice. We were not conspirators and the story had already been broadcasted on national and regional channels. Police agencies’ claim that we are conspirators or that we produced it is incorrect.”
Police have accused Singh and Aaj Tak’s Jaipur-based editor Sharat Kumar of cooking up a narrative of MLAs calls being recorded through the political disaster within the state in August. Kumar, nevertheless, has maintained that by the point it was telecast on Aaj Tak, it had already performed on different nationwide and regional channels in morning and afternoon.
Singh stated that after a narrative is telecast on information channels and “if I’m sharing it with friends – not even publishing it – or shared it in any official capacity, then how can we be conspirators?”
The People’s Union for Civil Liberties referred to as the police motion “vindictiveness of the Rajasthan Government led by CM Ashok Gehlot”, and requested it to “come clean on the issue of phone tapping”. 📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click right here to affix our channel (@indianexpress) and keep up to date with the newest headlines For all the newest India News, obtain Indian Express App.

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