Journalist Mandeep Punia who was detained yesterday from the Singhu border has been denied bail and sent to jail on Sunday, reports claimed.
Punia has been charged under Sections 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions), 332 (voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from his duty), 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty) of the Indian Penal Code.
Punia, a freelance journalist and contributor for The Caravan magazine, was covering the farmers' protest and subsequent clashes at Singhu border when he was detained by the Delhi Police for allegedly misbehaving with an official on duty at the protest site, as per a report by The Indian Express.
“Punia was standing with the protesters and he didn’t have a press ID card,” an unidentified officer told The Indian Express. “He was trying to move through the barricades which were kept to segregate and secure the area. An altercation broke out between police personnel and him. He misbehaved... there was some manhandling as well. He was then detained.”
Before his detention, Punia posted a video on Facebook giving a personal account about the violence at Singhu border. He spoke about how groups raised anti-farmer slogans, pelted stones at the protest site all in the presence of police officials.
He had also posted a video about how events unravelled on Republic Day during the farmers' tractor rally.
Since Friday, Singhu border has transformed from a peaceful protest site to one of clashes. A group of around 200 barged the venue amid heavy security, pelted stones at farmers and vandalised their tents. While the group claims to be "local" residents, farmers allege that they are Bharatiya Janata Party supporters. The Singhu border is one of the main protest sites gainst the new farm laws.
Delhi Police SHO (Alipur) was also injured in the violence. At least 44 people, including the man who attacked the SHO, have been arrested in connection with the incident.
As tensions remained high, the Union Home Ministry on Saturday snapped mobile internet services at three protest sites to “maintain public safety.”