(Says name of Tribune, its correspondent Rachna Khaira and whistle blowers should be taken out of FIR)
Chandigarh, January 9 – Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president Sukhbir Singh Badal today said registration of a case following expose on how the Aadhar data base was being breached by unscrupulous elements in which the Tribune and its correspondent Rachna Khaira had been named was unfortunate and that the Union government must move to dispel any impression that freedom of press had been compromised.
In a statement here, the SAD president said though Union minister of Information and Technology Ravi Shankar Prasad had made it clear that the FIR registered in the case was against unknown persons, he said the very fact that the Tribune correspondent Rachna Khaira as well as three others had been named in the FIR had given an impression that they would be proceeded against as per the law. “This impression needs to be dispelled immediately and the union government must take corrective steps to ensure that the journalist as well as The Tribune is not proceeded against in any manner”.
Badal said the SAD had always stood for freedom of expression. “We have been at the helm in the fight against Emergency which was imposed by former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi to muzzle the freedom of the Press. We understand that it is necessary to maintain security as well as ensure sanctity of Aadhar data for development of the country, but at the same time it should not seem that any journalist pointing out breaches in this system is proceeded against in any manner. The news story of The Tribune should be taken as input for investigation and the newspaper should be asked to assist in the inquiry against elements who were putting India’s security at risk”.
The SAD president said The Tribune’s name as well as that of its correspondent and the whistle blowers who facilitated the Aadhar expose should be taken out of the FIR registered on this issue