UP Board Exam Paper Leak: Ballia journalists’ bail plea rejected

A lower court in Ballia on Tuesday rejected bail pleas of three journalists from the district who were arrested for their alleged involvement in the paper leak case that led to cancellation of the UP Board Class XII English exam in 24 districts. Advocate Mithilesh Kumar Singh, representing the three journalists, said they will move the sessions court on Wednesday for bail.

The journalists — Ajit Ojha, Digvijay Singh and Manoj Kumar Gupta — were produced before court on Tuesday and their bail applications were heard by Judicial Magistrate Rajeev Ranjan Mishra. Ojha and Singh are employed with Amar Ujala, and Gupta with Rashtriya Sahara. They have been booked under IPC Sections dealing with cheating and forgery, and under Information Technology Act.

Advocate Singh told The Indian Express, “We will file bail pleas in a sessions court on Wednesday. Some of the sections invoked against my clients were bailable, while others are non-bailable. The lower court rarely gives bail in such cases.”

Journalists’ associations in Ballia have alleged that the three were “framed for reporting the paper leak”. Police maintain that they were arrested on the basis of their “role” in the case.

Resident editor of Amar Ujala’s Varanasi bureau Virendra had earlier said that during an internal probe both Singh and Ojha were found “innocent”. Journalists have been protesting to demand suspension of Ballia DM Indra Vikram Singh and SP Raj Karan Nayyar since the trio’s arrest.


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