Journalist Siddique Kappan's bail plea up in Supreme Court tomorrowtext_fields
New Delhi: The Supreme Court will hear Kerala journalist Siddique Kappan's bail plea on Monday. He was booked by the Uttar Pradesh government under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) in the alleged Hathras conspiracy case.
His appeal said the "present petition raises seminal questions about the right to liberty, as well as the freedom of expression and speech vested in independent media under the aegis of the Constitution," reported ANI.
A bench of Chief Justice of India UU Lalit and Justice Ravindra Bhat will be addressing his plea.
Kappan was arrested along with three others on October 5, 2020, from the Mant area. He has been in jail since. UP police claimed that they were travelling to Hathras to disturb peace and harmony. Police also alleged that they have links with PFI in Mathura.
The journalist has maintained that he was going to Hathras to report the gang rape and murder of a 19-year-old Dalit girl. He is a reporter for the Malayalam news portal Azhimukham.
The Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court rejected Kappan's bail plea earlier this month saying the "use of tainted money cannot be ruled out."
Kappan has now approached the top court challenging the High Court order noting that it "grossly overlooked the well-established principles regarding the grant of bail, and without affording any cogent reasons." He alleged that the Lucknow bench "mechanically dismissed" his plea.
The appeal noted that the Uttar Pradesh HC did not consider the fact that Kappan is an established journalist with over 12 years of experience. He is also a member of the Delhi press club and the Kerala Union of Working Journalists. The petition noted that both organisations have issued certificates in his support to authenticate his credentials as a journalist.