Yet another warrant against Alt News’ Zubair, this time in UP’s Lakhimpur Kheri

According to reports, the complainant, Ashish Kumar Katiyar, is an employee of Sudharshan News channel.
Mohammed Zubair in vehicle
Mohammed Zubair in vehicle
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In what seems to be a pattern of targeting Alt News co-founder Mohammed Zubair, yet another new warrant has been issued against him, this time by the Lakhimpur Kheri police. The new warrant has been filed in connection with a case filed last year on charges of promoting enmity between two groups. Zubair, who was arrested on June 27, has been in judicial custody for two different cases. In one of the cases, Zubair got interim bail from the Supreme Court on July 8. In the Lakhimpur case, the court has asked Zubair to appear before it on July 11. The summons were sent to the Sitapur jail where Zubair is lodged, reports The Indian Express.

The Lakhimpur Kheri case was filed in September last year, accusing Zubair of spreading fake news and disturbing communal harmony. According to reports, the complainant, Ashish Kumar Katiyar, is an employee of Sudharshan News channel. The case was registered under section 153-A (promoting enmity between two groups) of the Indian Penal Code.

The FIR names Zubair as the first accused and Twitter Inc and Twitter Communication as other accused. The FIR mentions that on May 14, 2021, Zubair made an allegedly fake claim on Twitter against Sudharshan News. The tweet in question is one where Zubair said Sudarshan News TV had "used a pic of Al Masjid an Nabawi from Madina, superimposed it with an old pic from Ghaza, with graphics bombing the mosque." Zubair wrote in the tweet, "Is this reporting or trying to incite violence?" He tagged the UP police and Noida police to take action.

The FIR against him states that Zubair allegedly appealed to Muslims to unite, and attempted to poison the minds of people using anti-national sentiments. The complaint adds that Zubair’s tweet amounts to spreading hate which can lead to a war-like situation in the country. It also states that many shared and retweeted Zubair’s tweet in an attempt to spread anti-national sentiments.

After the Supreme Court granted Zubair bail in the Sitapur case against him, he has two more warrants pending against him - one from Delhi and another from Lakhimpur Kheri. The Sitapur case concerned a tweet he made about three extremist Hindi seers calling them ‘hatemongers’ while the Delhi case pertains to another tweet he made four years ago with stills from a 1983 film that a user had found ‘objectionable’. The stills were from the film Kissi Se Na Kehna in which a board showed that the erstwhile Honeymoon Hotel had changed its name to Hanuman Hotel. 

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