LUCKNOW: Siddique Kappan, a journalist from Kerala arrested in Indian state of Uttar Pradesh more than two years ago while reporting on the alleged rape of a young Dalit woman whose death sparked nationwide protests, was released from a UP jail.
A Sessions Court in Lucknow on Wednesday signed orders to release Kappan on bail after accepting his bail bonds.
Initially, Kappan was arrested under the apprehension of causing a breach of peace. Subsequently, he was booked under the UAPA alleging that he was trying to incite communal riots and disrupt social harmony in the wake of the Hathras gang rape-murder case.
In 2020, a Dalit woman was allegedly gang-raped in the Hathras district of Uttar Pradesh. The woman had died at a Delhi hospital a fortnight after the incident. Her body was cremated by the police and village administration without the knowledge of her family members leading to widespread protests and condemnation of the Yogi Adityanath government.
“I will continue my fight against draconian laws. They kept me in jail even after I got bail… 28 months after a long fight. I don’t know who’s benefiting from me being in jail. These two years were very tough, but I was never afraid,” Kappan told media after his release from the Lucknow jail.