Zubair’s arrest was unlawful, and if elected, he will defend free speech: Sinha

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Yashwant Sinha, a former Union Minister and joint presidential contender for the opposition, declared on Thursday that the arrest of fact-checking website Alt News was “najayaz” (illegal) and that, if elected to the position, he would preserve press and speech freedoms.

Sinha met with Samajwadi Party and Rashtriya Lok Dal leaders after arriving in Lucknow to campaign (RLD). He addressed a press conference although SP coalition partner Suheldev Bhartiya Samaj Party leader Om Prakash Rajbhar was conspicuously absent. He was joined by SP president Akhilesh Yadav and RLD leader Jayant Chaudhary.

Akhilesh stated that this was Rajbhar’s issue and that it should be left in his hands.

Singh urged journalists to question Droupadi Murmu, the NDA’s presidential nominee, when she visits Lucknow on Friday to campaign. Singh claimed that India does not need a president who keeps silent at the moment. In fact, he asserted, the nation today requires a president who is intelligent.

According to Sinha, the Constitution would be his sole source of accountability if he were to be elected president. He clarified that this does not imply a disagreement with the prime minister.

He promised to stop the dispensation from doing anything that may endanger democracy by toppling elected governments, as it did in Mahrashtra and other states, if he learns of it in his capacity as President.

“I’ll work to prevent polarisation within communities. In addition to the rights guaranteed by the Constitution, I will safeguard the freedom of speech and the freedom of the press. I deplore Mohd Zubair’s arrest, he continued.

The former Union minister requested that the journalists question Murmu about her opinions on the nation’s current economic position, foreign policy, and societal events.

Sinha called the government’s decision to implement demonetisation the “greatest swindle” of the century, adding that he had no personal beef with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, only with his policies and management style. In response, Shina replied, “Modi ji se meri vyaktigat ladayi nahi hai.. ladayi hai unki way of functioning, unki nitiyon se.” He stated that he would be running for office in Gujarat on Friday.