Discourage malicious reporting about Najeeb

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To,

The Chairperson, Press Council of India

Times of India, one of country's largest newspapers, published a story titled "Missing JNU student Najeeb searched for info on IS, say police" claiming that JNU student Najeeb Ahmad who is missing since 15th October last year searched for ISIS resources/links on his computer. Quoting the Delhi police, the story effectively brought an ISIS angle to Najeeb's story, which was picked up by several other vernacular newspapers, online news portals and rightwing social media pages.

When the Delhi Police made a clarification asserting that no such link has been found, the Times of India, published a short portion of it on the 5th page next day.

Till today, the Times of India has not apologised for its malicious story, sending wrong signals about Najeeb and fueling a barrage of hateful comments about Najeeb on the social media. Najeeb's mother has asked the Times of India to apologise, in a press conference in the national capital, in which she was seen crying profusely. Since Najeeb is not there to clarify, such fabricated stories, twisting facts, would damage the case and public perception about Najeeb, she said.

The ToI journalist Raj Shekhar Jha has continued to stun us by his brazenness, rudely responding to renowned activists, artists and fellow journalists and blocking anyone on Twitter, who asked questions. Such arrogant behaviour also deserves public condemnation.

Our demands -

- Times of India must apologise for falsely linking Najeeb to ISIS

- ToI must take action against its journalist Raj Shekhar Jha

- Press Council of India should issue an appeal to media houses to exercise utmost sensitivity and restraint in reporting such cases in the atmosphere of polarisation that prevails in the country.



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