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Open letter – Pushp Shama, Journalist who exposed religious discrimination by AYUSH

Push sharma- ic courtesy ANI

Push sharma- ic courtesy ANI

Pushp Sharma’s message to his readers after his temporary release

Ayush RTI story journalist released, told to report back tomorrow morning

New Delhi: Kotla Mubarakpur police station, where journalist Pushp Sharma was being interrogated after he was picked up by a police force from his home in Lajpat Nagar at 6:30 pm this evening, allowed him to go home at 10:30 pm, with the instruction that he must report at the police station tomorrow at 10 am with all the papers relevant to his story about the AYUSH ministry. Dr Zafarul-Islam Khan, Editor of the Milli Gazette which broke the story claiming that the ministry as per government policy did not recruit Muslims, said that this is plain harassment of media and muzzling of free speech. The ministry should make its enquiries to find out what really happened. He added that we are always ready to publish the ministry’s version but will fight back at its high-handed tactics.

Pushp Sharma’s message to his readers after his temporary release

To my readers at home and abroad
Dear readers,
My stand is the same now after this ordeal at the hands of the Delhi Police. I got many papers from the Ayush Ministry which any journalist will use if he gets such stuff which is harmful to the interests of the social and secular fabric of the country. Moreover, when the concerned ministry issued a press release denying what I had reported, we followed all journalistic rules and uploaded the ministry’s press release as well as other documents in our possession. I told the cops that if any story is questioned by an interested party, then the globally accepted norm is for the interested party to provide its version which is later published or uploaded by the editorial board of the publication after consulting legal experts. We too follow same policy and are open to this even now.

Moreover, I told the SHO of the concerned police station that in media if a group does a story and later any interested group or person updates it and sends facts, then the globally accepted policy is to crosscheck the content and publish or upload it with an apology. After listening this for a few minutes, I heard just abuses, and shouts and allegations, like: who is behind you and what is your motive? I told them that my decision and reason to do any story is always journalistic. So obviously people in power will try to spread rumours, do character assassination or try to connect me with some political outfit.

It seems the system is hell-bent to do character assassination, arms-twisting and stoops to the extent of mockery and issuing threats just because of a story.

I will revert with another exposé on Yoga soon, if I continue to have my freedom.



Written after the journalist’s temporary release at 11:00 pm on 15 March, 2016 with the instructions to report back to the police station next morning at 10 am.

Released by The Milli Gazette at 12.50 am – 16 March 2016.

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