New Delhi : The Editor’s Guild of India Thursday demanded the release of A.S. Mani, editor of Tamil magazine Netrikan, who was arrested by the Madurai city police on charges of publishing a defamatory article on union Minister M.K. Azhagiri.
Mani was arrested on the basis of a complaint of defamation by Suresh, a close friend of Azhagiri alleging that the magazine had published an article offending him and union Minister Azhagiri.
The article reportedly said Suresh was the key person behind awarding major road contracts. Successful bidders had to hand over a percentage as commission before receiving the contracts, it alleged.
“The Editors Guild of India has consistently held that arrest and imprisonment of editors and journalists for complaints of defamation amounts to intimidation of the media and is an affront to the freedom of the press,” the Guild said in a statement.
“The Guild has been demanding that this provision in the Indian Penal Code should be removed, and that the courts should decide on matters of defamation.”
“The Guild demands that Mani should be released forthwith, and the law should take its course in case Suresh files a defamation case in an appropriate court.”