Alt News co-founder Mohamed Al-Zobeir posted his first tweet after the Supreme Court granted him bail. Several cases have been registered in UP alleging harming Zubair’s religious sentiments. Then the police arrested him. After being in prison for nearly 24 days, Zubair was released on 20 July. Al-Zubayr also thanked those well-wishers for their support in a tweet.
Al-Zubayr begins his tweet with a poem written by the Urdu legend Rahat Indouri, which was written by aaj sahib e masnad hai kal nahi hoga. Which roughly means that those in power today will not be there tomorrow. He then wrote, Thank you all, I am grateful for the support I have received from well-wishers in India and around the world in the past month. Your support and my family have given me so much strength.
There are seven cases registered against Zubair with UP
Delhi Police arrested Zubair on June 27 on charges of harming religious sentiments by tweeting in 2018 against a Hindu deity. Zubair was taken into police and judicial custody after half a dozen FIRs were recorded in various parts of Uttar Pradesh for posting tweets harmful to religious sentiments. UP Police has formed a special investigation team to investigate the allegations. A total of seven FIRs have been registered against Zubair in Uttar Pradesh, including two in Hathras and one each in Sitapur, Lakimpur Khiri, Muzaffarnagar, Ghaziabad and Chandauli.
The Supreme Court made sharp statements
While granting bail, the Supreme Court noted that arrest should not be used as a punitive weapon, but the criminal justice mechanism has been used repeatedly against Alt News co-founder Muhammad Al-Zubair. The Supreme Court refused to accept the Uttar Pradesh government’s call to rein in Zubair from tweeting while he is out on bail, saying the restrictive order dampens freedom of expression.