Yechury condemns RNI cancelling registration of CPI(M) mouthpiece in Tripura

October 02, 2018 09:42 am | Updated 10:37 pm IST - New Delhi

CPM General Secretary Sitaram Yechury during an interview to The Hindu in New Delhi on March 18, 2018.  
Photo: V.V. Krishnan

CPM General Secretary Sitaram Yechury during an interview to The Hindu in New Delhi on March 18, 2018. Photo: V.V. Krishnan

For the first time since it became a daily in 1979, the Daily Desher Katha — the mouthpiece of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) and the second largest circulated daily in Tripura — was off the stands on Tuesday.

Reason: hours after the Registrar of Newspapers for India (RNI) issued the certificate of registration for the daily, it was withdrawn at 10 p.m. on Monday based on inputs from the State administration.

The RNI order, signed by Additional Press Registrar K. Satish Nambudiripad, said the certificate was withdrawn after the sub-divisional magistrate of Sadar West, Tripura, cancelled the “authentication as recorded by him over the declaration made in Form 1.”

Change in ownership

Shyamal Debnath, an RTI activist, had in May complained to District Magistrate Sandeep Mahatme saying that the daily had changed its ownership without informing the RNI. He said that the print line used to read ‘Published by Tripura State Committee of CPI(M)’. But in March, before the Assembly election result, the print line changed to ‘Published by Daily Desher Katha Trust’ from its office in Agartala’s Melarmath locality.

CPI(M) central committee member and former Editor of the daily Gautam Das, however, claimed that the administration had been informed about changes in ownership at every stage.

'Highly condemnable'

“This is highly commendable and autocratic decision of BJP-led Tripura government. This is suppression of democracy,” CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury told The Hindu .

The CPI(M) will be holding a protest against this decision.

The party has been consistently flagging the violence inflicted on its cadres allegedly by right wing activists in Tripura. In a recent Polit Bureau meeting held on September 26 too, the party had raised the issue.

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