CPI(M) moves HC against RNI cancelling registration

CPI(M) moves HC against RNI cancelling registration

Tripura former Chief Minister Manik Sarkar. (PTI File Photo/Atul Yadav)

Daily Desher Katha, a mouthpiece of Tripura unit of the CPI(M), has filed a writ petition in the Tripura High Court challenging the decision of the Registrar of Newspapers for India (RNI) to cancel the newspaper's registration, the Bengali daily's editor Samir Paul said on Sunday.

In a letter on October 1, the RNI said the publication of the daily was being suspended. It cited "unauthorised change of ownership" as the reason behind the step.

"We filed the writ petition in the high court on Saturday. We are waiting for the petition to be admitted for hearing in the high court. We challenged the decision of the RNI to withdraw our registration," Paul told reporters.

District Magistrate of West Tripura Sandeep Namdeo Mahatme had said the newspaper was found to have violated several sections of the Press and Registration of Books Act, 1867.

A complaint against the newspaper was registered in August this year, he had said.

A preliminary investigation conducted by the DM found that the complaint had substance, following which a hearing was initiated.

The complainant had alleged that there was a mismatch between the information of editor, printer and publisher provided in the newspapers' declaration and data maintained with the RNI, among other issues.

The daily, which had previously declared itself as a mouthpiece owned by the CPI(M) Tripura state committee, changed its ownership declaration as a newspaper published from Daily Desher Katha Society a few months before the new BJP-Indigenous Peoples Front of Tripura (IPFT) coalition came to power in March.

Sources in the newspaper, however, claimed that the Daily Desher Katha Society was formed in 2013. But when the issue came up for hearing, the newspaper authorities reportedly failed to provide the necessary evidence.