Relief to NewsClick HR Head, Delhi HC Orders Release in UAPA Case


The Delhi High Court, considering the medical condition of NewsClick’s human resources department chief Amit Chakravarty and his role as an approver in the case lodged against the news portal under the anti-terror law UAPA for alleged receipt of funds to disseminate pro-China propaganda, has ordered his release from custody.

Justice Swarana Kanta Sharma passed the order after acknowledging Chakravarty’s medical condition and the prosecution’s lack of objection to his release, as he has become an approver in the case and has been granted pardon.

Reserves Order

The court, which reserved its decision on Chakravarty’s plea on May 3, directed his release upon furnishing a personal bond of Rs 25,000 along with one surety of the same amount, subject to the satisfaction of the concerned trial court. It highlighted the purpose of keeping an approver in custody until the trial’s conclusion to prevent them from retracting from the terms of pardon to protect former associates. However, it warned that failure to comply with pardon conditions, such as providing false evidence, could lead to additional charges.

‘Human Approach’

Noting Chakravarty’s 59 percent permanent disability and his dependence on a wheelchair for daily movement, the court emphasized the need for a humane approach to his situation, citing significant obstacles to his daily activities. The Delhi Police, through its counsel, expressed no objection to granting relief to Chakravarty, who has been cooperating with the investigation after being granted pardon by the trial court in January.

Chakravarty, who claims possession of material information relevant to the case, had been allowed to become an approver by the trial court in January. The Special Cell of Delhi Police had arrested NewsClick founder Prabir Purkayastha and Chakravarty on October 3 last year, both of whom are currently in judicial custody.


The FIR alleges that a substantial amount of funds from China was intended to disrupt India’s sovereignty and cause disaffection against the country through NewsClick. It further accuses Purkayastha of conspiring with the People’s Alliance for Democracy and Secularism (PADS) to interfere with the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. Raids were conducted at multiple locations in Delhi and other states, resulting in the seizure of electronic gadgets and questioning of numerous individuals, including journalists associated with NewsClick.

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About the Author: Nunnem Gangte