NewsClick: Delhi HC Reserves Order on HR Head’s Bail Plea


The Delhi High Court reserved its order on Friday on a bail plea of NewsClick‘s human resources department chief Amit Chakravarty in a case lodged against the news portal under the anti-terror law UAPA over charges that it received money to spread pro-China propaganda.

Justice Swarana Kanta Sharma reserved the order after Chakravarty’s counsel submitted that the chargesheet has already been filed in the case and the petitioner, after turning an approver, has been cited as a prosecution witness.

The lawyer asserted that the high court retains discretion under section 482 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) to grant bail to Chakravarty.

‘No Objection’

The counsel for the Enforcement Directorate (ED) affirmed that the prosecution has no objection if relief is granted to him. Chakravarty’s legal counsel stated that his client has been granted pardon in the case by the trial court and is also cooperating in the probe. In January, the trial court permitted Chakravarty to become an approver in the case and granted him pardon. Chakravarty has claimed that he is in possession of “material information” about the case, which he is willing to disclose to the Delhi Police.


The Special Cell of the Delhi Police apprehended NewsClick founder Prabir Purkayastha and Chakravarty on October 3, 2023. Both of them are presently in judicial custody. 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. Additionally, the FIR accused Purkayastha of conspiring with a group — People’s Alliance for Democracy and Secularism (PADS) — to sabotage the electoral process during the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

Police reported that raids occurred at 88 locations in Delhi and seven in other states on October 3 last year targeting the suspects named in the FIR and those whose names emerged following data analysis. About 300 electronic gadgets were confiscated from the offices of NewsClick and residences of the scrutinized journalists. Following the raids, the Special Cell interrogated 46 individuals, including nine female journalists.

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About the Author: Nunnem Gangte