Delhi court grants police 60 more days to complete NewsClick probe

A Delhi court on Friday granted the city police 60 more days to complete its probe in the case lodged under anti-terror law UAPA over allegations that news portal NewsClick received money to spread pro-China propaganda in India.

Special Judge Hardeep Kaur also extended the judicial custody of the news portal’s founder and Editor-in-Chief Prabir Purkayastha and Human Resources department head Amit Chakravarty till January 20.

The court passed the order on a plea moved by the Delhi Police that sought more time to complete the investigation.

The Special Cell of Delhi Police had arrested Purkayastha and Chakravarty on October 3.

According to the FIR, a large amount of funds to the news portal came from China to “disrupt the sovereignty of India” and cause disaffection against the country.

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It also alleged Purkayastha conspired with a group — People’s Alliance for Democracy and Secularism (PADS) — to sabotage the electoral process during the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

Raids were conducted at 88 locations in Delhi and seven in other states on October 3 on the suspects named in the FIR and those that surfaced in the analysis of data, police said.

Around 300 electronic gadgets were also seized from the offices of NewsClick and the residences of the journalists who were examined.

Following the raids, 46 individuals, including nine female journalists, were questioned by the Special Cell.

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