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UP police books journalist Barkha Dutt and 7 others for ‘fake news’ on Unnao deaths

The Political Edge Bureau
February 23, Chandigarh
An FIR has been lodged against eight Twitter handles for allegedly propagating fake news in connection with the death of two girls here last week, police said on Monday.
The Twitter handles include news portal ‘Mojo Story’, led by senior journalist Barkha Dutt who termed the FIR a case of brazen “harassment and bullying”. She alleged that the Unnao Police had refused to even give a copy of the FIR.

The case was registered at the Sadar Kotwali police station area in Unnao on Sunday against seven more Twitter accounts: Janjagran Live, Aazad Samaj Party spokesperson Suraj Kumar Boudh, Nilim Dutta, Vijay Ambedkar, Abhay Kumar Azad, Rahul Diwakar, Nawab Satpal Tanwar.
Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Vinod Kumar Pandey said that FIR has been lodged for propagating “fake and misleading news” regarding the incident.

Three girls, aged 16, 15 and 14, had left home to bring fodder for cattle on Wednesday night. They were found lying in an agriculture field when they did not return home.

In a tweet Barkha said, “Just when you thought it couldn’t get any more shocking the Unnao Police has refused to even give us a copy of the FIR in total violation of my legal rights, and without which we cannot appeal for judicial intervention. Brazen Harassment and bullying.”

Local residents had rushed them to a hospital where two of them were declared brought dead. Police said, the third girl is presently undergoing treatment at a hospital in Kanpur. The last rites of the deceased girls were performed on Friday morning amid tight security arrangements. The Unnao Police has held two people in this connection, accusing them of murder over one-sided love.

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