Sahmat demands withdrawal of FIRs against ToI journalists

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New Delhi, Jun 3 (UNI) Rights body Sahmat has demanded the withdrawal of FIRs against Times of India's Ahmedabad resident editor Bharat Desai and reporter Prashant Dayal, lodged by the city police commissioner, terming it as a ''deplorable and condemnable'' act.

''The approach of the Gujarat police has not been impartial at all, which was apparent from its role in the 2002 riots, resulting in the murders of the more than 1000 people,'' it said in a statement yesterday.

It said the act of booking journalists in a case of sedition, criminal conspiracy proves that there is no room for differing views in that state.

Police Commissioner O P Mathur has filed a case against the newspaper for running a campaign against him and levelled charges of sedition and treason against the resident editor and the reporter.

The articles published on the front page by the newspaper, had described the cop as an agent of the former underworld don, Abdul Latif, who was killed in an encounter and through him, being connected with Dawood Ibrahim and the Inter Services Intelligence.

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