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"No need to justify...": Anurag Thakur on Delhi Police's action against NewsClick, its journalists

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Shailesh Khanduri
New Update

New Delhi: Union Minister of Information and Boradcasting Anurag Thakur on Tuesday said that he did not need to justify the raids by Delhi Police's Special Cell at the premises of online portal NewsClick and its journalists.

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Speaking to media in Bhubaneswar, Thakur said, "The investigation agencies are free to take action against anyone found committing anything wrong. I don't need to justify. If anyone has committed anything wrong, search agencies are free to carry out investigations against them under set guidelines."

Delhi Police’s ongoing raids at different premises linked to NewsClick are based on a case registered on 17th August under UAPA and other sections of IPC. Case registered under sections of UAPA, 153A of IPC (promoting enmity between two groups), 120B of IPC (Criminal conspiracy), officials said.

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The Enforcement Directorate had earlier conducted raids at the firm's premises probing its sources of funding. The Special Cell is now raiding the media firm on the basis of inputs provided by the central agency.

Officials in the know said police have recovered the dump data from laptops and mobile phones of some journalists of NewsClick.

The journalists linked to NewsClick whose houses were raided by Delhi Police are: Newsclick editor Prabir Purkayastha and writer Githa Hariharan, Paranjoy Guha Thakurta, Bhasha Singh, Urmilesh, Abhisar Sharma, Aunindyo Chakravarty, Sohail Hashmi, and Sanjay Rajaura.

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Some journalists including Urmilesh, Thakurta and Sharma were brought to the Lodhi Road Special Cell office, but no one has been arrested so far, they said.

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The Press Club of India on X said it is deeply concerned about raids on the houses of journalists and writers associated with NewsClick.

"The Press Club of India is deeply concerned about the multiple raids conducted on the houses of journalists and writers associated with #Newsclick. We are monitoring the developments and will be releasing a detailed statement.

"The PCI stands in solidarity with the journalists and demands the government to come out with details," it said.

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In August, the Delhi High Court sought the stand of NewsClick Founder and Editor-in-Chief Prabir Purkayastha on a plea by the city police seeking vacation of an earlier order granting him interim protection from arrest in an unlawful foreign funding case.

The website recently hit the headlines for allegedly receiving money from US millionaire Neville Roy Singham for pro-China propaganda in India.

Citing an investigation by The New York Times, Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur too recently claimed that the NewsClick's money trail revealed an "anti-India agenda."

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