India News Media

Bombay HC Rejects PIL Based on Social Media

Chief Justice D K Upadhyaya and Justice Arif Doctor, constituting the division bench, declined to entertain the PIL, expressing dissatisfaction with its lack of specifics….reports Asian Lite News

The Bombay High Court, in a recent hearing, rejected the inclusion of information obtained from social media in public interest litigation (PIL) proceedings. The PIL, filed by advocate Ajitsingh Ghorpade, sought the Maharashtra government’s intervention in safeguarding waterfalls and water bodies, alleging an annual loss of 1,500 to 2,000 lives in unsafe locations in the state.

Chief Justice D K Upadhyaya and Justice Arif Doctor, constituting the division bench, declined to entertain the PIL, expressing dissatisfaction with its lack of specifics. Ghorpade’s lawyer, Manindra Pandey, mentioned that the data on fatalities was derived from newspapers and social media posts. However, the court criticized the petition as vague and admonished the use of social media information in PIL pleadings, emphasizing the need for responsibility in such legal actions.

The court questioned the petitioner’s approach, stating that filing a PIL based on accidental drownings during picnics might not necessarily constitute a violation of fundamental rights. The bench asserted that such cases were a “sheer wastage” of judicial time. Pandey argued for the state government to ensure the safety of individuals visiting these sites, but the court countered, highlighting the challenges of monitoring every waterfall and water body.

In response to the court’s queries about the petitioner’s firsthand knowledge, Pandey failed to provide substantial details. The bench suggested withdrawing the PIL and encouraged filing a more comprehensive one with proper specifics. The petitioner agreed, leading to the withdrawal of the petition.

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-Top News Arab News Media

Hezbollah Demands Global Condemnation of Israeli Strikes on Media

On October 14, the Lebanese Foreign Ministry submitted a complaint to the UN Security Council against Israel for launching attacks on journalists…reports Asian Lite News

Hezbollah, a Lebanese Shia military group, has vowed to retaliate against Israel’s “brutal aggression” after two journalists from Lebanese TV channel Al-Mayadeen were killed in Israeli attacks on the southern village of Tayr Harfa.

“This crime, the previous attack on Reuters photojournalist Issam Abdallah, the killing of dozens of journalists in Gaza and the destruction of their headquarters by the occupation forces, reveals the important role played by the media in exposing the enemy’s practices and exposing its horrific crimes against civilians, especially in the Gaza Strip,” Hezbollah said on Tuesday in a statement.

The military group called on international media and humanitarian bodies to condemn the “crime and similar crimes that preceded it,” and “exert the highest levels of pressure” on the Israeli government to stop its attacks on media professionals and civilians, Xinhua news agency reported.

Meanwhile, Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati strongly condemned the Israeli attacks that killed media professionals in the south on Tuesday. He said the attack proved once again that “Israel’s goal is to silence the media that exposes its crimes and attacks”.

For his part, Lebanese Defence Minister Maurice Slim called for “a unified and effective Arab and international position in the face of the continuous Israeli aggression as statements of denunciation and condemnation are no longer sufficient”.

Farah Omar, a reporter working for local TV channel Al-Mayadeen, and Rabih Al-Maamari, a photographer working for the same channel, were covering the events in southern Lebanon on Tuesday when two Israeli drones hit them, killing both of them and a civilian named Hussein Akil, Lebanese TV channel Al-Manar reported.

On October 13, Issam Abdallah, a Lebanese photojournalist working for Reuters, was killed while covering Israeli attacks in the southern village of Alma al-Shaab while several other journalists working for Agence France-Presse and Al Jazeera were injured.

On October 14, the Lebanese Foreign Ministry submitted a complaint to the UN Security Council against Israel for launching attacks on journalists.

The Lebanon-Israel border witnessed increased tension for over six weeks after Lebanese armed group Hezbollah fired dozens of rockets toward Shebaa Farms on October 8 in support of the Hamas attacks on Israel on Monday, prompting the Israeli forces to respond by firing heavy artillery toward several areas in southeastern Lebanon.

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-Top News Media UAE News

Global Media Congress Sets New Standards in Industry Collaboration

The second edition of the Global Media Congress saw a phenomenal increase in attendance, with 23924 visitors compared to 13556 the previous year, showing a 76.48 per cent increase in attendance…reports Asian Lite News

On the final day of the Global Media Congress, attendees and speakers reflected on a series of groundbreaking sessions that provided insights into the current media landscape as well as its future trends.

With the Congress having broken records in terms of attendee numbers, speaker participation and business and brand participation, the event’s closing sessions offered yet more diverse perspectives, creative ideas, and collaborative spirit, all converging to redefine the role of media in an ever-evolving global society.

The second edition of the Global Media Congress saw a phenomenal increase in attendance, with 23924 visitors compared to 13556 the previous year, showing a 76.48 per cent increase in attendance.
There was also an increase in participating countries, with 172 countries featuring during the congress, with 31 new countries participating for the first time. Covering 32,000 square metres, the Congress’s footprint grew 78 per cent from last year, attracting 77 leading industry speakers from 18 different countries.

Under the patronage of Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice President, Deputy Prime Minister and Chairman of the Presidential Court, the day was marked by a series of compelling keynote speeches, insightful panel discussions, and exclusive interviews that all contributed to the Congress’s overarching narrative of driving innovation and business growth in the global media landscape.
Mohammed Jalal Al Rayssi, Director-General of Emirates News Agency (WAM) and Chairman of the Higher Organising Committee for the Global Media Congress, said, “Once again, the Global Media Congress has gathered together leaders, decision-makers, and executives from renowned media institutions around the world to successfully shape the future of the global media industry. Through coordinated efforts and the productive exchange of creative concepts and breakthrough technological solutions, we have further consolidated the UAE’s position as a key global hub for advancing the future of the media industry and setting the groundwork for its productive growth to serve the world’s economies and societies.”

Day three of the Congress gave a special emphasis to the themes of tolerance and community harmony, sport and the media, and the impact of technology on different media platforms.

Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Managing Director and Group Chief Executive Officer of ADNEC Group, stated, “As we bring this edition of the Global Media Congress at ADNEC to a close, I am profoundly grateful to the many excellent participants that have joined us from around the world for their enthusiasm and invaluable contributions. I also wish to thank the wise leadership of the UAE for their vision and unwavering support for this globally significant event. In keeping with ADNEC Group’s commitment to advancing Abu Dhabi’s economic diversification through expanded business and tourism opportunities, we look forward to repeating the outstanding success of this Congress in its future editions.”

Among the MoUs concluded at the conference were two agreements on the final day between New Media Academy and Core 42, the UAE Journalist Association and American University in the Emirates.
The ingenuity on display in the startup competition exemplified the Global Media Congress’s focus on unlocking the potential of new talent in the media sector. Also important in this respect was the launch at this year’s event of the Education Stage and Co-Production Majlis as new features were designed, along with the return of the Innovation Stage, NexTech, and Future Media Lab, to explore education and Al as key drivers of the sector’s future evolution.

Additionally, the elite-level discussions held at the Future Media Labs are expected to lead to a new White Paper on the industry’s future that will build on a similar publication in 2022. Through such game-changing initiatives, the 2023 Global Media Congress has confirmed its status as an essential forum for thought leadership and visionary new partnerships. (ANI/WAM)

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Media Tech Lite

X banned over 2L accounts for violations in India in Oct

Most complaints from India were about hateful conduct (1,424), followed by abuse/harassment (917), child sexual exploitation (366), and sensitive adult content (231)…reports Asian Lite News

Elon Musk-run X Corp (formerly Twitter) banned a record 2,34,584 accounts in India between September 26 and October 25, mostly for promoting child sexual exploitation and non-consensual nudity.

The micro-blogging platform, going through a churning under Musk, who has recently appointed a new X CEO Linda Yaccarino, also took down 2,755 accounts for promoting terrorism on its platform in the country.  In total, X banned 2,37,339 accounts in the reporting period in India.

X, in its monthly report in compliance with the new IT Rules, 2021, said that it received 3,229 complaints from users in India in the same time frame through its grievance redressal mechanisms. In addition, X processed 78 grievances which were appealing account suspensions.

“We overturned 43 of these account suspensions after reviewing the specifics of the situation. The remaining reported accounts remain suspended,” said the company. “We received 53 requests related to general questions about accounts during this reporting period,” it added.

Most complaints from India were about hateful conduct (1,424), followed by abuse/harassment (917), child sexual exploitation (366), and sensitive adult content (231).

Under the new IT Rules 2021, big digital and social media platforms, with more than 5 million users, have to publish monthly compliance reports.

Between August 26 and September 25, X banned 5,57,764 accounts in India.

The micro-blogging platform also took down 1,675 accounts for promoting terrorism on its platform in the country.

In addition, between July 26 and August 25, the company banned 12,80,107 accounts and took down 2,307 accounts for promoting terrorism on its platform in the country. Meanwhile, X has “actioned” over 325,000 pieces of content that violated its terms of service, including violent speech and hateful conduct, amid the ongoing Israel-Hamas war.

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-Top News Arab News Media

Israeli Media Watchdog Alleges Photojournalists’ Connection to Hamas Attack

The statement further said that these journalists were accomplices in crimes against humanity and that their actions were contrary to professional ethics…reports Asian Lite News

The Israel Communications Ministry has contacted international media outlets — New York Times, CNN, Associated Press (AP) and Reuters — after an Israeli media watchdog,, brought out details regarding the photojournalists employed by these outlets had been with Hamas terrorists when they swarmed into Israel on October 7 early hours and massacred civilians.

The, which works to expose false narratives against Israel in foreign press, asks whether these photojournalists were aware of such a massacre as they were present on the scene of crime.

The watchdog also raised questions whether these journalists had permission to cross into Israel from Gaza.

The investigation by revealed that these photographers had documented the kidnapping of civilians and soldiers by the Hamas terrorists. The burning of tanks and murder of an IDF soldier was also documented by these photojournalists.

The spokesperson of AP responded to this stating that it had no advance knowledge of the October 7 massacre. 

The spokesperson of AP, Nicole Meyer, in a statement said, “AP had no advance knowledge of the October 7 attack.”

The statement also added, “AP’s role is to capture news and images worldwide, at any point, even if they are terrible and involve victims.”

The National Public Diplomacy Directorate in the Israeli Prime Minister’s office said, “We view this with utmost gravity that photojournalists working with international media joined in covering the brutal acts of murder perpetrated by Hamas terrorists on October 7.”

The statement further said that these journalists were accomplices in crimes against humanity and that their actions were contrary to professional ethics.

The Israel Communications Minister Shlomo Karhi contacted CNN, New York Times, AP and Reuters.  

After the denial by AP, Reuters also said that it did not have any prior knowledge of the October 7 massacre.

The Reuters in a statement said, “We are aware of a report by HonestReporting and accusations made against two freelance journalists and accusations made against two freelance photographers who contributed to Reuters coverage of the October 7 matter.”

It also added that the Reuters acquired photographs from two Gaza-based freelancers and said that the photograph that was published two hours after Hamas fired rockets into southern Israel. It also said that its staff reporters and photojournalists were not present on the scene of crime.

The HonestReporting had also released photographs of the photojournalist, Hassan Eslaiah from whom both AP and CNN had collected photos, along with the Hamas’ most wanted leader and military commander, Yahya Sinwar.

CNN and New York Times are yet to give a rebuttal.

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CPJ Condemns Attacks on Journalists During Gaza Assault

The CPJ further said that it was investigating numerous unconfirmed reports of other journalists being killed, missing, detained, injured or threatened, and of damage to media offices and journalists’ homes…reports Asian Lite News

Since Hamas launched its massive assault against Israel on October 7, at least 39 journalists and media workers have been killed in the Gaza Strip in the ensuing violence, the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) said in a report.

In its update report issued on Wednesday, the New York-based nonprofit also said that October 2023 was the deadliest month for journalists globally since it began record keeping in 1992. 

Of the 39 fatalities, 34 were Palestinian, four Israeli, and one Lebanese.

The CPJ also said that eight journalists were injured, three remained missing and 13 others arrested.

Meanwhile, there were also reports of multiple assaults, threats, cyberattacks, censorship and killings of family members of the journalists, the nonprofit added.

“CPJ emphasizes that journalists are civilians doing important work during times of crisis and must not be targeted by warring parties,” Sherif Mansour, CPJ’s Middle East and North Africa program coordinator, was quoted as saying in the report.

“Journalists across the region are making great sacrifices to cover this heart-breaking conflict. Those in Gaza, in particular, have paid, and continue to pay, an unprecedented toll and face exponential threats.

“Many have lost colleagues, families, and media facilities, and have fled seeking safety when there is no safe haven or exit,” he added.

Since the war began, a total of 10,569 people have died in Gaza, 1,400 in Israel and 150 in the West Bank.

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Cricket Media Sport

MEDIA: Remitly & Simba Join ICC Cricket Sponsorship Fold

Sky Media announces Remitly and Simba as co-sponsors of Channel 5’ ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup coverage.  Channel 5 is broadcasting daily highlights of the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup for the first time. Remitly’s sponsorship marks its first ever TV partnership with a mainstream channel

Sky Media, the advertising arm of Sky, has announced Remitly, a leading digital financial services provider for immigrants and their families, and sleep specialists Simba, as co-sponsors of Channel 5’s coverage of the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup. This is the first time that Channel 5 will be showing the championships through daily evening highlights. The 10” sponsorship creatives will be running alongside the highlights shown across Channel 5, My5 and Sky On Demand.  The sponsorships will launch at 7pm (BST) on the 5th October and run until the 19th November.  Held in India the opening match will see current holders England take on New Zealand.

Remitly’s partnership was established through its long-standing relationship with multicultural marketing agency, Here and Now 365; and Sky Media. Cricket plays an important role in the lives of many of Remitly’s South Asian customers, including keeping communities connected across the globe. Similarly, Remitly’s mission is focused on keeping customers connected to their loved ones through its international money transfer services, making this sponsorship opportunity a natural fit.

  Simba will also be part of the coverage as an expansion of their already successful Channel 5 partnership which was renewed in January, which sees them sponsor Evenings on Channel 5, Drama on Channel 5 and My5.

 “Remitly is pleased to partner with Sky Media and Channel 5 on this TV sponsorship for the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup,” said Pankaj Sharma, EVP, Global Remittance Business Management at Remitly. “We are always energized by opportunities to share in the activities and traditions that are meaningful to our customers, and we know that cricket is an incredible cultural passion for many of our customers from the South Asia region. Through this partnership, we look forward to participating in this exciting experience with our customers.”

Jon Moore, ecommerce and marketing director, Simba Sleep said: “Working with our long-term marketing partner Wake The Bear, we’ve really seen the huge impact a strategically relevant and well executed sponsorship can do for our brand as well as our bottom line. We’re excited to expand our partnership activities with Sky Media as ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup coverage is a great fit for Simba’s audience and brand profile.”

“The Men’s Cricket World Cup marks an exciting moment in this year’s sporting calendar and Channel 5 will be the number one, free-to-air channel for cricket fans up and down the country to enjoy all the highlights from India,” said Pete Dale, VP, UK adsales and commercial development, Paramount. “We’re looking forward to seeing our partnership with Simba and Remitly come to life throughout what promises to be a thrilling competition.”

Debarshi Pandit, Head of Multicultural Business, Sky Media has said: “Cricket as a sport elicits a totally different unprecedented level of passion and fan-following, especially within the South Asian communities that form a significant base of Remitly’s clientele. And casting the net further in terms of reach, through a free to air linear platform like C5 making the Remitly brand visible and relevant through this unique partnership for the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup is a no-brainer!”

The highlights coverage is part of a new partnership with Sky to bring daily highlights to free-to-air audiences. Every match will be exclusively live on Sky Sports.

India News Media Politics

Delhi Police Arrest NewsClick Founder and HR Head Under UAPA

According to the remand copy, raids were conducted on October 3 at 88 locations in Delhi and seven locations in other states, leading to the seizure of electronic devices and documents…reports Asian Lite News

After the Special Cell of Delhi Police on Tuesday arrested NewsClick founder and editor Prabir Purkayastha, and HR head Amit Chakravarty under anti-terror law, Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, the case has garnered significant attention and is being closely monitored by many including media organisations and civil rights groups.

A Delhi court on Wednesday also remanded to seven days of police custody.

Before the Additional Sessions Judge Hardeep Kaur of Patials House Courts, the police had sought custodial interrogation of the accused for several reasons, like to unearth the entire conspiracy, to confront the accused with data recovered from digital devices, to complete the search at the PPK Newsclick office, to interrogate the accused regarding the content of the emails and uncover the conspiracy.

The police had, however, sought 15 days of police custody for both accused individuals.

On August 17, the Special Cell of the Delhi Police registered a case alleging that foreign funds amounting to crores of rupees had been illegally funneled into India by both Indian and foreign entities with the intent to disrupt India’s sovereignty, territorial integrity, and national security.

The case has reportedly been registered under various Sections 13 (unlawful activities), 16 (Terrorist Act), section 17 (raising funds for terrorist acts), section 18 (Conspiracy) and section 22 C (Offences by Companies) of the UAPA and 153A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc., and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony) and 120 B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code.

According to the remand copy, raids were conducted on October 3 at 88 locations in Delhi and seven locations in other states, leading to the seizure of electronic devices and documents.

“It was learnt that Prabir Purkayastha conspired with a group namely People’s Alliance for Democracy and Secularism (PADS) to sabotage the electoral process during 2019 general elections. It is also learnt that People’s Dispatch Portal, owned and maintained by M/S PPK Newsclick Studio Pvt. Ltd. has been used for intentionally peddling these false narratives through paid news in lieu of crores of rupees of illegally routed foreign funds as part of conspiracy,” the remand copy reads.

The remand copy states that the Enforcement Directorate (ED) had previously registered a case against PPK NewsClick Studio Pvt. Ltd. and seized electronic gadgets and data from their office.

Subsequently, during the investigation, data extracted from the seized devices was analyzed, revealing a larger conspiracy.

The case alleges that secret intelligence inputs indicated that foreign funds were illicitly introduced into India by individuals and entities hostile to the nation’s interests. These funds were reportedly intended to disrupt the nation’s unity, integrity, and security.

It is alleged that M/S PPK Newsclick Studio Pvt. Ltd. received fraudulent foreign funds in crores of rupees from M/s Worldwide Media Holdings LLC, USA, and other entities over a short span of five years, starting from April 2018.

It states that these funds were fraudulently infused into India through a complex web of entities, including Worldwide Media Holdings, People Support Foundation, Justice and Education Fund, GSPAN LLC, and Tricontinental Ltd. Inc. USA, among others.

It has been alleged that Neville Roy Singham, an active member of the Propaganda Department of the Communist Party of China, was involved in illegally routing foreign funds through these entities. Some of these funds were intended to support anti-Indian activities, including those related to banned Naxal organisations.

It has been alleged that the accused conspired to peddle narratives that challenge India’s sovereignty, including depicting Kashmir and Arunachal Pradesh as disputed territories. It is claimed that they intended to undermine the unity and territorial integrity of India.

Allegations have been made that funds were distributed to various individuals, including associates of Teesta Setalvad, a well-known activist and journalist, and others.

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-Top News India News Media

NewsClick’s Founders in Seven-Day Custody

he Delhi Police team also sealed the office of NewsClick in New Delhi….reports Asian Lite News

A Delhi court has ordered the detention of NewsClick founder and editor Prabir Purkayastha, along with HR head Amit Chakravarty, for a period of seven days in police custody.

After the Special Cell of Delhi Police on Tuesday arrested them under anti-terror law, Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, they were produced before the court at night.

In a statement, regarding the search, seizure and detentions carried out on Tuesday, in connection with a UAPA case registered with Special Cell, the Delhi Police said that a total of 37 male suspects have been questioned at premises, including nine female suspects at their respective places of stay.

The police said that digital devices, documents, etc., have been seized or collected for examination.

“The proceedings are still ongoing. So far, two accused, Purkayastha and Chakravarty have been arrested,” the Delhi Police said.

The Special Cell swung into action on Tuesday morning and carried out searches at several locations in Delhi-NCR, including the office of NewsClick and journalists associated with it.

The Delhi Police team also sealed the office of NewsClick in New Delhi.

The Special Cell had registered an FIR in the case on August 17 under different sections of the UAPA and the Indian Penal Code against Newsclick.

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India News Media Politics

Delhi Police Crackdown On NewsClick Journalists

NewsClick writers Paranjoy Guha Thakurta and Urmilesh’s house were also searched. They were seen being taken by police in the cars. …reports Asian Lite News

The Special Cell of the Delhi Police has created a questionnaire containing a minimum of 25 inquiries for the journalists who have been apprehended in relation to the China funding case.

However, there was no official confirmation regarding the detention of journalists whose houses were raided by the police teams in the early hours of Tuesday.

As per sources, the questions pertain to anti-CAA protests at Shaheen Bagh, farmers protest, North East Delhi riots and even details of their foreign travels.

Over 30 locations were raided by the Special Cell in connection with allegations that the media outlet NewsClick received funding from China. However, no arrests have been made so far. 

During the raid, the Special Cell had also seized electronic evidence, laptops, mobile phones, pen drives and also took data dumps of hard disks from the NewsClick office and also those belonging to the journalists associated with the organisation, including Bhasha Singh, Abhisar Sharma, Sanjay Rajoura and among others.

NewsClick writers Paranjoy Guha Thakurta and Urmilesh’s house were also searched. They were seen being taken by police in the cars. 

“Delhi police landed at my home. Taking away my laptop and Phone,” Sharma on Tuesday wrote on X. 

“Finally last tweet from this phone. Delhi police seized my phone,” another journalist of the web portal, Bhasha Singh tweeted. 

On August 5, The New York Times published an article titled ‘A US Tech Mogul Linked to a Global Web of Chinese Propaganda’, alleging that NewsClick, a news portal, was part of a global network receiving funding from American millionaire Neville Roy Singham, who was purportedly closely associated with Chinese government media.

Citing the NYT report, Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Singh Thakur asserted that Congress, China, and NewsClick had an ‘anti-India umbilical cord’ and were pushing the agenda of the Communist Party of China through the website.

Subsequent to the NYT report, NewsClick issued a statement two days later, denying the allegations as baseless and lacking factual or legal support.

Sources indicate that the searches at various locations connected to NewsClick were conducted based on a case registered on August 17 under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) and other sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), including Section 153A (promoting enmity between groups) and Section 120B (criminal conspiracy). 

A source said that section 16 (Terrorist Act), section 17 (raising funds for terrorist acts), section 18 (Conspiracy) and section 22 C (Offences by Companies) of the UAPA have been invoked in the FIR.

Delhi Police at Sitaram Yechury’s residence

A team of Delhi Police’s Special Cell visited the residence of CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury on Tuesday to question his staffer Sri Narayan’s son who works for NewsClick, the media outlet accused of receiving funds from China.

According to sources, the Special Cell officers seized Sunmit Kumar’s mobile, laptop, and hard drive.

Yechury has denied that the searches were not against him or the CPI(M) but was related to the son of one of his staffers.

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