FIR Against 'The Wire' Under Various Sections Of IPC, Including 420 For Cheating And Forgery
The FIR was registered after a complaint by BJP leader Amit Malviya.
A first information report (FIR) has been filed against the news and opinion website The Wire and its editors for their now-withdrawn stories about the technology company Meta.
The portal's editors have been booked under Indian Penal Code (IPC) Sections 420 (cheating), 468 (forgery with the purpose of cheating), 469 (forgery for harming reputation), 471 (using forged document), 500 (defamation), 120B (criminal conspiracy), and 34 (common intention).
Police have registered an FIR against The Wire's founding-editor triumvirate Siddharth Varadarajan, Sidharth Bhatia, and M K Venu. Deputy editor Jahnavi Sen, who is the daughter of Marxist economist Jayati Ghosh, has also been named in the report.
The FIR was registered after a complaint by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Amit Malviya.
In a story published on 10 October, The Wire had alleged that Malviya enjoys extraordinary privileges with Instagram and has used it to suppress criticism of the Modi government.
That story, and subsequent articles in the series, have since been retracted after it emerged that the news website forged screenshots and emails.
The portal also withdrew its reports related to a software application that it claimed was named 'Tek Fog' and used by the BJP to manage its online operation to silence its critics.
The reports, authored by Devesh Kumar and Ayushman Kaul, disappeared from the website after revelations that it was also likely to be based on fabricated evidence.
Meanwhile, The Wire has filed a police complaint against Devesh Kumar, one of the persons who worked on the Meta stories.
In a statement, The Wire claimed that fraudulent information was brought to them by a member of their team (later identified as Devesh Kumar).
"The Wire has duly filed a police complaint against the person for wilfully and knowingly committing a fraud and an act of deception with us," the statement said.
For all of The Wire-Meta saga and how the stories were proven to be fake news, read here.
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