All-India Kisan Sabha, Tripura welcomes bail given to NewsClick editor by Supreme Court

May 15, 2024

Agartala (Tripura) [India], May 15 : The All-India Kishan Sabha (AIKS), Tripura State Committee, welcomed the Supreme Court's decision to grant bail to News Click editor Prabir Purkayastha on Wednesday.
Purkayastha had been detained since October 2023 amid allegations of receiving foreign funding for the news portal, an accusation that led to his arrest under the UAPA law.
Pabitra Kar, the state secretary of AIKS Tripura, hailed the apex court's judgement, criticising the basis for Purkayastha's prolonged detention.
"The editor was targeted and arrested solely because of his support for the historic farmers' movement and his critical stance against the Modi government," Kar stated during a press meet at the AIKS Agartala office.
Kar highlighted that despite the serious accusations of receiving funding first from Khalistani sources and later from Chinese entities, the police failed to present any substantial evidence supporting these claims, raising questions about the motives behind the arrest. "What is the meaning of being detained for so long if there is no proof?" Kar asked.
The AIKS leader did not hold back in accusing the BJP of using state machinery to suppress dissenting voices, particularly those not aligning with RSS ideologies. "The pattern of arresting prominent figures like Arvind Kejriwal, Navalkar, and Hemant Soren showcases a troubling trend of politically motivated arrests," he added.
The AIKS has consistently supported Purkayastha, stating at the time of his arrest that it was both "unjust and illegal." The organisation vows to continue its struggle against what it perceives as illegal arrests and actions by the police that go against public interest.
Today's development has been a significant relief for Purkayastha's supporters and a noteworthy event for those monitoring the intersections of press freedom, government accountability, and the right to dissent in India.