The Tamil Nadu police yesterday booked rightwing blog OpIndia for “spreading false news” about migrant workers in the state. The case was registered against the blog’s CEO Rahul Roushan and editor Nupur Sharma at the Thiruninravur police station in Avadi.
The FIR was based on a complaint from DMK IT wing member Suryaprakash who accused the website of creating a sense of “fear” among migrant workers through false news.
Over the past week, fabricated rumours spread in the state of North Indian migrants in the state being “murdered”, “threatened” and “brutalised”. OpIndia had, among other instances of fake news, there were “Talibani style attacks being carried out against the Hindi-speaking migrant labourers”.
State BJP chief K Annamalai was also for “false messages”. A case was registered against Dainik Bhaskar and the BJP’s spokesperson in Uttar Pradesh for “spreading false news”. A fourth case was registered against one Mohammad Thanveer of the Tanveer Post.
The state government, police and industrialists subsequently issued statements and held meetings to assure migrants of their safety. A fact-finding team from Bihar also met with migrant workers in Coimbatore to gauge the situation.
This isn’t the first complaint against OpIndia for fake news and it won’t be the last. Newslaundry had reported on the scale of misinformation reported by the rightwing blog, and about a certain, undisclosed BJP connection. .