The Bombay High Court on Monday granted four weeks’ transit anticipatory bail to journalist Rana Ayyub in the case filed by the Uttar Pradesh Police for spreading fake news and creating communal tension.
The FIR relates to a video that went viral on social media of an elderly man in Ghaziabad being beaten up and his beard cut. He was also allegedly told to chant ‘Jai Shri Ram.’
Senior advocate Mihir Desai representing Ms. Ayyub appeared before a single bench of Justice P.D. Naik seeking interim protection from arrest to approach the appropriate authorities. .
The court said it was learnt that there was a transaction between the assailant and the victim. Mr. Desai said the FIR was registered on June 15 and Ms. Ayyub deleted the tweet on June 16 after she learnt about the FIR.
The court, in its order, recorded that Ms. Ayyub had worked with Tehelka magazine, had received the Sanskriti award for excellence in journalism and the ‘Citation of Excellence’ in the Global Shining Light Award and that Time magazine had named her among ten journalists who faced the highest threats to their lives.
The court granted her four weeks of transit anticipatory bail and said the time would not be extended.
She has been booked under sections 153 (wantonly giving provocation with intent to cause riot),153-A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc., and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony), 295-A (deliberate and malicious acts intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs), 505 (statements conducive to public mischief) and120-B (punishment for criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code.