Mamata Govt files FIR against Zee News reporters for covering Dhulagarh riots: Sudhir Chaudhary

In what might be a ‘real’ attack against press freedom, in an announcement made on Twitter, the senior editor and business head of Zee News, Sudhir Chaudhary revealed that the Government of West Bengal had filed an FIR against him and Zee News reporter Pooja Mehta for covering the Dhulagarh Riots, which largely went unnoticed by a large section of the media and eminent mediapersons as part of their ‘selective outrage policy‘.

Not just did the Mamata government file an FIR, it did so under non-bailable sections, Sudhir Chaudhary claimed. He further commented about the FIR, saying a democratically elected government was trying to stifle all those voices that go against its wishes.


This appears to be in series of events that have been orchestrated to completely black out the details of what transpired in Dhulagarh and nearby areas. Earlier the BJP party delegate was not allowed to enter the riot torn area by the Howrah police.

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This is what transpired in Dhulagarh, as described here:

On 13th December Muslims brought out a procession complete with loudspeakers blaring Hindi film music on 13 December to celebrate Eid-e-Milad (the birthday of Prophet Mohammed), which actually fell on 12 December and was a public holiday. On 13 December, Hindus at Dhulagarh village, like in the rest of the country, were observing Margashirsha Purnima. Hindus at the village requested those in the procession to lower the volume of the loudspeaker since the music was interfering with some rituals. This incensed a section of those in the procession and they started attacking Hindu homes and shops. According to local people, the attackers were non-local Muslims. Hindu houses and shops were looted and then set ablaze while police who reached the village were attacked by bombs and prevented from stopping the rioters.

Now it will be interesting to see what would the reaction of the the Editors Guild of India be. Just recently the body of top journalists had drawn the conclusion that the token 1 day token ban on NDTV for giving away security locations during the Pathankot attack was reminiscent of the Emergency days. So surely an FIR using non-bailable offences, which might lead to media persons actually going to jail just like during the emergency, might warrant some form of a protest from the Guild?

Also what needs to be seen is that how does the whole intolerance brigade react to the situation and would people now return the Banga Bibhushan award which the West Bengal government gives to personalities from various fields.

This is the Zee News report, for which the FIR is reported to have been filed:

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