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news details
HC stays DC Kishtwar's order against ET scribe
8/30/2018 11:42:51 PM
Early Times Report
kishtwar, Aug 30: In a snub to Deputy Commissioner Kishtwar, Angrez Singh Rana, who in order to 'punish' Early Times Correspondent Asif Iqbal Naik for not favouring him while reporting on various issues in the district, the J&K High Court on Thursday stayed the order issued by Rana banning the entry of Naik in government offices in Kishtwar.
The court issued a notice to the State through Commissioner Secretary to Government Revenue Department, Civil Secretariat Srinagar/Jammu, District Magistrate (DC, Kishtwar), Angrez Singh Rana, District Magistrate (DC, Kishtwar) and Davinder Singh, Deputy Superintendent of Police, CID SB Kishtwar.
The petitioner, Naik, through his counsel Faheem Shokat Butt had filed a writ petition under Article 226 of the Constitution of India with section 103 of the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir for the issuance of appropriate writ, order or directions, to quash order impugned bearing No. 45 of 2018, dated 27.08.2018 passed by Rana U/S 144 CrPC.
Advocate Butt stated that the petitioner is a permanent resident of Jammu and Kashmir State and citizen of India, as such he is entitled to invoke the extraordinary writ jurisdiction of the court for the safeguard of his fundamental, legal, constitutional and statutory rights as enshrined under part III of the Constitution of India as applicable to J&K.
Butt added that the petitioner is a reputed journalist associated with Early Times as a correspondent/local reporter from the very inception of the newspaper. Besides, the petitioner is also associated with electronic media specially Times Now channel and has broken various stories of national importance. By dent of his hard work the petitioner earned lot of respect amongst the masses and carved out a special and unique place amongst the journalist fraternity.
Butt stated that vide order impugned dated 27.08.2018 is illegal, arbitrary and has been passed by Rana under colourable and malafide exercise of powers since the purpose of Section 144 is preventive in nature and not punitive.
He stated that while passing the order impugned dated 27.08.2018, Rana has relied upon some report of SSP Kishtwar dated 01.05.2018 whereby it is alleged that petitioner has published baseless and fake news on 20.04.2018 regarding "torture of a man by Kishtwar Police". The reference is also made to report dated 04.07.2018 by respondent No. 4 dated 04.07.2018 whereby he reported that petitioner is notorious type of Correspondent who used to threaten government employees and collected handsome money. Reference is also made to some FIR No. 105/2018 and 117/2018 registered against petitioner by Police Station Kishtwar.
Rana has also relied upon some complaints from District Officers/officials regarding unnecessary harassment and it is stated that the public in general and officials in particular are suffering due to bad activities of petitioner and he has created nuisance in the district and it is necessary to prevent the interference and disturbance by the petitioner.
Butt also informed the court that the orders U/S 144 CrPC can be passed only in case of emergent situations where immediate prevention or speedy remedy is desirable and no such averment is reflected in order impugned.
He stated that the freedom of speech and expression of petitioner has been snatched by Rana and he has been prevented from performing his duties as a journalist.
After hearing the arguments of the counsel of the petitioner, Justice Deeraj Singh Thakur stayed the impugned order issued by the DC Kishtwar and issued the notices to the respondents returnable within two weeks.
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