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‘Uninformed comments unhelpful’, says India after Germany’s remarks on arrest of Mohammed Zubair

Source : Asian News International (ANI)

‘Uninformed comments unhelpful’, says India after Germany’s remarks on arrest of Mohammed Zubair
Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi addresses a media briefing on Thursday. (Ministry of External Affairs/ YouTube)



New Delhi: A day after Germany said it is monitoring the case of the alleged objectionable tweet by Alt News co-founder Mohammad Zubair, the Ministry of External Affairs said it is a domestic issue on which a judicial process is underway and it would not be appropriate to comment on a subjudice matter.

“It is a domestic issue, there is a judicial process underway in this case. It would not be appropriate to comment on a case that is subjudice,” MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said responding to media queries.

“Independence of the judiciary is well recognized. Uninformed comments on judiciary are unhelpful and should be avoided,” he added.

German Foreign Ministry spokesperson said on Wednesday that they are closely monitoring the case of Mohammed Zubair.

“Free reporting is beneficial to any society and restrictions are a cause for concern. Journalists should not be persecuted and imprisoned for what they say and write. We are indeed aware of this specific case and our embassy in New Delhi is monitoring it very closely,” the spokesperson had said.

Alt News Co-founder Mohammed Zubair was arrested on June 27 and sent to one day of police custody after a First Information Report (FIR) was registered against him based on a Twitter posting, which another Twitter handle alleged “hurt Hindu sentiments.”

The contentious tweet by Zubair was posted in March 2018.

After a Delhi court on July 4 dismissed the bail application of Zubair, he was taken to Sitapur in connection with a case registered against him.

The court on Saturday sent Zubair to 14-day judicial custody.

Answering another query, Bagchi said the government has taken prompt and clear action against the inappropriate depiction of Hindu Gods showcased as part of the ‘Under the Tent’ project at the Aga Khan Museum, Toronto.

“The content was removed after the Indian High Commission urged the Canadian authorities to withdraw it. Filing an FIR in the case is a domestic matter. MEA’s action on the issue was very clear and prompt,” he said.

“We asked the Canadian authorities to take action against such provocative material, and as per our action, the content has been removed. It is not being telecast there now. The two organisers of the event have also issued an apology statement,” Bagchi added.

Indian High Commission had on Monday urged Canadian authorities to withdraw the disrespectful depiction of Hindu Gods showcased in one of the videos from the project ‘Under the Tent’ at the Aga Khan Museum, Toronto.

The Toronto-based Aga Khan Museum had expressed deep regret for “inadvertently causing offence” to members of the Hindu and other faiths.

In a statement, the museum said Toronto Metropolitan University brought together works from students of diverse ethnic and cultural backgrounds, as part of Canadian multiculturalism for the project ‘Under the Tent.’

The museum said one of 18 short videos from ‘Under the Tent’ and its accompanying social media post inadvertently caused offence to members of the Hindu community.

“Toronto Metropolitan University’s project presentation was hosted at the Aga Khan Museum in the context of the Museum’s mission to foster intercultural understanding and dialogue through the arts. Respect for diverse religious expressions and faith communities forms an integral part of that mission,” the statement.

“The Museum deeply regrets that one of the 18 short videos from ‘Under the Tent’ and its accompanying social media post have inadvertently caused offence to members of the Hindu and other faith communities,” it added.

A poster for a documentary directed by filmmaker Leena Manimekalai has drawn flak for hurting religious sentiments with its depiction of Goddess Kaali.

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