Washington, May 19 A US-based media watchdog has appealed to India to release a journalist arrested for allegedly fabricating an RTI reply and publishing a news report claiming that the government had been discriminating against Muslims in their recruitment as yoga trainers in the Ayush Ministry.
"The journalist, Pushp Sharma, should not be held behind bars while he waits for the courts to adjudicate the case against him," Committee to Protect Journalist's (CPJ) Asia Programme Coordinator Bob Dietz said in a statement.
"The journalist is not a danger and he presents little risk of flight. We call on Indian authorities to release him immediately," Dietz said.
The Delhi-based journalist was arrested on May 14 on charges of cheating, forgery and promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, after a case was registered against him.
The case was registered against him after his report 'We don't recruit Muslims: Modi govt's Ayush Ministry' appeared on Milli Gazette, a fortnightly English language newspaper. On May 16, a Delhi court sent him to 14 days' judicial custody.