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FIR against AltNews co-founder for responding to open abuse on Twitter

Zubair was responding to Jagdish Singh, who via Twitter handle @JSINGH2252, used abusive language against him

Monday September 7, 2020 8:31 AM, ummid.com with inputs from IANS

Zubair AltNews

New Delhi: After the complaint of the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) over allegedly "threatening and torturing a girl child through Twitter", Delhi Police Cyber Cell and Raipur Police have filed FIRs under sections of the IT Act and Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act against AltNews co-founder Mohammed Zubair.

On August 6, Zubair had an online argument with a Twitter user after which the AltNews co-founder had tweeted a photo of the minor girl seen standing with the user, with her face blurred out. Zubair tweeted, "Does your cute granddaughter know about your part-time job of abusing people on social media? I suggest you to change your profile pic."

Zubair was responding to Jagdish Singh, who via Twitter handle @JSINGH2252, used abusive language against him.

Trolls however started crticising Zubair, with messages seeking action against him for what they called "threatening and torturing a girl child." Some users also tagged NCW, Delhi police and NCPCR.

This despite Zubair on August 7 posted a screenshot of the Jagdish Singh's post using abusive language in a reply to Zubair's tweet on a fact check news he posted.

However, on August 8, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights took note of the matter in this case and the NCPCR chairperson Priyank Kanoongo tweeted, "The Commission has taken cognizance of the case of threatening and torturing a girl child through Twitter. Necessary communication have been issued to @TwitterIndia and concerned law enforcement authorities for appropriate action."

Later, on Saturday , Kanoongo informed through a tweet "According to the ATR received in @NCPCR_ A,an FIR has been lodged against the alleged persons for threatening and torturing a girl child on @Twitter. As per the request made by @TwitterIndia an additional time of 10 days has been provided to them to provide relevant information."

The complaint sent by NCPCR, which is the basis of the two FIRs in Delhi and Raipur, mentions three Twitter handles, including @zoo_bear, which is run by Mohammed Zubair, fact-checker and co-founder of fact-checking website, AltNews.

Alt news issued a statement on Sunday which read: "An attempt is being made to hound co-founder of Alt News, Mohammad Zubair (@zoo_bear) through misuse of legal apparatus. Alt News stands by Mohammad Zubair. Zubair has been in the forefront of fighting fake narratives, and his work hurts those who have weaponised misinformation to subvert the Indian democracy."

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