Popular Front of India has sent legal notice to various newspapers and TV news channels as they “have published / telecast news that were baseless and defamatory to Popular Front of India.” The legal notices were sent by Mr. Bahar U Barqi and Maroof Ahmad, Advocates, Supreme Court of India, on behalf of PFI.
PFI has also sent a complaint to Press Council of India “to take action against the Sunday Pioneer for repeatedly publishing false news against the organization.”
Mr. K. M. Shareef, General Secretary, Popular Front of India, in a statement on Friday said “Popular Front of India has become the favourite target of a section of the media. It is not uncommon to see news items and articles against the organization appearing in some of the newspapers and channels. Such media attack is not limited to any particular state and recently we have seen a single report being published in various language newspapers in different states...The media ethics often go for a toss while publishing such reports and there will be no sort of verification done by the media persons on the authenticity of the reports. When we go through the reports that have appeared since past few months we can identify numerous instances of this media insensitivity and blatant prejudice.”
Mr. Shareef further said: “While reading few reports that have appeared recently we can conclude that such media attack is not just a coincidence but a part of a larger conspiracy to target Popular Front of India.”
PFI has issued legal notice after news reports in which it was connected with banned group SIMI and it was alleged to be behind some terror attacks in the country. In a section of media, PFI was accused to be behind the Israel embassy car blast and even in the Mumbai terror blasts of last year. PFI has refuted all charges. The group is angry that none of newspapers/TV channels have contacted PFI for clarification before publishing baseless reports quoting unknown intelligence sources etc.
Mr. Shareef pointed to some news headings which prompted his organization to take legal course.
He gave a list of “recent defamatory news against Popular Front”:
• UP cops yet to solve Varanasi case: PC – Hindistan Times
• PFI national HQ shifted to Delhi – The Asian Age
• Khufia report ka khulasa, PFI ke SIMI se Rishte: Intelligence report reveals PFI has SIMI connection – IBN 7
• PFI meet: Intel gropes in dark – Deccan Chronicle
• PFI training cadre for questioning – Times Now
• Blast, 3 Sangathano par Khufia Nazar: Blast: Three organizations under agencies observation – Nav Bharath Times
• Sandheh ke gere mein PFI - Attack on a diplomat PFI under suspicion – Dainik Jagran
• Delhi Car Blast: Clues Point to PFI – The New Indian Express & CNN – IBN
• PFI under scanner of investigating agencies – The Inquilab
• IB report says extremist PFI has shifted base to Delhi – The Sunday Guardian
• SIMI body wakes Muslims up to woes of vote politics & SIMI- backed party alarms NIA- Sunday Pioneer
PFI has issued the legal notice to Dainik Jagran Hindi Daily, Hindustan Times English Daily, The Asian Age English Daily, IBN-7 Hindi News Channel, Deccan Chronicle English Daily, Times Now English TV Channel, Nav Bharat Times Hindi Daily, The Inquilab Urdu Daily, The New Indian Express English Daily, The Sunday Guardian English Weekly and CNN-IBN English TV Channel.
He said media attack against PFI is a planned conspiracy to defame the organization. “To call Popular Front of India which is one of the biggest neo-social movements in India a banned organization is not just a mistake or error but a planned conspiracy to defame the organization and an attempt to impede its influence and growth. It needs to be noted that Popular Front of India has a larger presence in south India but since last few years it is making huge leaps in many states of north India,” said Mr. Shareef.
The PFI will take next step in the light of the response it receives from the media houses. “We proceed further with filing cases in court and taking the matter to Press Council of India in the light of the response of the above channels and newspapers to our legal notice,” Mr. Shareef said.