After the Hathras incident in UP, Siddiqui Kappan, a journalist arrested on several charges including inciting the public, has got a big relief. The Allahabad High Court has granted bail to journalist Siddiqui Kappan in the ED case.
Lucknow: Kerala journalist Siddique Kappan got bail in money laundering and UAPA case. He is coming out of jail after almost two years. Citing ‘freedom of expression’, the Supreme Court had granted bail to Kappan in September.
But due to not getting bail in the money laundering case, he had to remain in jail. The Uttar Pradesh police arrested Kappan while going to Hathras for the rape of a Dalit girl. Sections of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) were imposed on him. The UP police alleged that Kappan was trying to incite violence on the pretext of the incident. However, before the Supreme Court, the police did not put anything that was ‘provocative’.
Kappan got bail from the Supreme Court in September in the terror case filed under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) and other relevant laws, but a money laundering case was also filed against Kappan by the Enforcement Directorate (ED). That’s why Kappan had to stay in Lucknow Jail.
Earlier this month, a Lucknow court framed charges against Kappan and six others under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), which meant the trial could begin. The other accused in the case are KA Rauf Sheriff, Atiqur Rehman, Masood Ahmed, Mohd Alam, Abdul Razzaq and Ashraf Khadir.
Police have claimed that these people are members of the since-banned Popular Front of India and its student wing, the Campus Front of India (CFI). According to the police, these people have denied any involvement in terrorist activities or terror funding. They have argued that they were traveling to Hathras only for journalistic work. Kappan and three co-accused – Atiqur Rehman, Mohd Alam and Masood Ahmed – were arrested by the UP Police in Mathura.