New Delhi: Pushp Sharma, the Milli Gazette journalist who reported that the AYUSH ministry was denying jobs to Muslims in a 'fake' RTI query was arrested by Delhi Police on Staurday and presented at Saket Court, according to the investigating officer, Sanjiv Mandal.
Pushp Sharma is accused of fabricating an RTI reply in which the AYUSH Ministry allegedly says that it does not recruit Muslims for jobs.
Earlier, the AYUSH Ministry filed a formal complaint with the Delhi Police asking them to probe the alleged 'fake' RTI query, in which Sharma alleged that the Centre's discrimination against Muslims in the Yoga teachers' selection process for International Yoga Day is fabricated, adding that he has proof that all the RTI replies in his possession are authentic.
The Ministry has rejected a purported 'fabricated and mischievous' RTI reply which had claimed that the Centre does not recruit Muslims in the ministry as a policy.
The Ministry of AYUSH noted with anguish certain mischievous misinformation being spread in certain section of media and social media quoting a reply to an RTI by mentioning a fabricated draft as Annexure I to that letter, which has never been issued by the Ministry of AYUSH or any of its agencies.
"The Ministry strongly condemns this piece of misreporting, clearly aimed at causing chasm between different sections of society and promoting disharmony and mistrust with ulterior motives," the Ministry said in a statement.
The Ministry in a statement said, certain mischievous misinformation is being spread in certain section of media and social media quoting a reply to an RTI by mentioning a fabricated draft as Annexure I to that letter, which has never been issued by the Ministry of AYUSH or any of its agencies.
The Press Council of India (PCI) too has taken sou motto notice of the reports published in the media and has initiated a case against the news magazine for publishing a “fabricated” news item.
Meanwhile, Dr Zafarul-Islam Khan, chief editor of the Milli Gazette said the Ayush Ministry FIR against the journalist and the Press Council of India’s sou motto action are clear attempts to stifle the freedom of the press.
He said, why the Ayush Ministry was quick to file a complaint with the police, it failed to make any contact in any manner with the newsmagazine. Moreover, the PCI, instead of protecting journalists and media publications, seems to be taking the side of the government.