This violates the fundamental rights of citizens, he said

Arrests not the answer to rumours on Jayas health NHRC chairman slams TN govtPTI
news Saturday, October 22, 2016 - 10:33

Questioning the Tamil Nadu police's move to arrest people for allegedly spreading rumours about the health of Chief Minister Jayalalithaa, National Human Rights Commission chairperson and former Chief Justice of India H L Dattu said that freedom of expression should not be curtailed.

According to The Times of India, he said, “People have the freedom to express. Supreme Court has accepted that freedom of expression is the fundamental right of the people. In a very recent decision, the SC has upheld this."

He added, “Even if the punishment comes under section 505 (referring to section 505 (1) and 505 (1,b) of the Indian Penal Code which deals with publishing or circulating any statements, rumours or reports which are likely to cause fear or alarm to the public ...arrests may not be the answer.”

Arrests are not the way, he said, while Interacting with the media for the first time since taking over as NHRC chairman earlier this year.

A few days ago, DMK treasurer MK Stalin had alleged harassment of party members by the police, arresting them on the pretext of commenting against the AIADMK supremo.

In a statement, he said, “We cannot tolerate such action any longer.”

So far, the Tamil Nadu police have registered more than 50 cases against those who have posted information related to Jayalalithaa's health on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and WhatsApp. Eight persons have been arrested. The AIADMK leader is undergoing treatment at Apollo Hospital in Chennai.

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