Mary Lawlor, the UN special rapporteur on human rights defenders, has said she is "very concerned" by the ongoing detention of journalist Siddique Kappan.
In a tweet, Lawlor pointed out that Kappan had been arrested two years ago while on his way to cover the rape and murder of a young Dalit woman in Hathras. "Now facing UAPA charges & denied bail," she wrote.
I am v concerned by ongoing detention of HRD&journo Siddique Kappan in #India.Siddique was arrested in 2020 on way to Uttar Pradesh to cover reported rape and murder of a young Dalit woman&he has frequently highlighted discrimination in India. Now facing UAPA charges&denied bail pic.twitter.com/mxDk81OcrT
Lawlor's tweet comes a day after Kappan's nine-year-old daughter gave an impassioned speech on her father's imprisonment during Independence Day celebrations at a school in Kerala. Mehnaz Kappan said her father has been "forced into a dark room by breaking all of the freedom of a citizen".
"Remembering all the brave patriots who fought for the freedom of India, I stop here by saying that the freedom of the common citizens of India should not be taken away," the as saying.
Kappan's wife is currently working on moving the Supreme Court with his bail application. The Allahabad High Court had his bail plea on August 4.
Kappan was arrested in October 2020 by the Uttar Pradesh police while on his way to Hathras. He was charged under the UAPA as well as the sedition law. He had moved the high court for bail after a court in Mathura rejected his plea last year.