After SC direction, Gujarat Police says expressing grievances on social media not rumour mongering

A three-member SC bench headed by Justice Chandrachud observed on Friday, "If citizens communicate their grievances on social media and internet then it cannot be said its wrong information. "

In the wake of a Supreme Court bench observing on Friday that citizens expressing their grievances on social media and internet during the Covid 19 pandemic will not be counted as “wrong information” and should not attract police action, a notification order was issued by the Gujarat Police for all police commissioners, heads of ranges and superintendents to take cognizance of same.

A three-member SC bench headed by Justice Chandrachud observed on Friday, “If citizens communicate their grievances on social media and internet then it cannot be said its wrong information. I am issuing a warning to all DGPs of states that we will treat it as contempt of court if such grievances is considered for action (sic).”

As per a notification order released by Narsimha Komar ADGP (Law and Order) for police commissioners, range Inspector Generals and superintendents of police across the state read, “The Honourable SC during a hearing related to Covid-19 pandemic observed that citizens expressing their grievances for lack of oxygen, beds and doctors on social media, then action should not be taken against them by considering it as rumor-mongering. Any action taken against the citizens by police authority will be considered as contempt of court (Sic).”

However, a senior Gujarat Police official told the Indian Express, “If anyone is facing problem in getting medical resources, is running from pillar to post and that person is expressing their grievances on social media then no action will be taken against them. However it doesn’t give blanket protection to anyone indulging in creating false sensation and rumor mongering on purpose.”

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