Kishor Ram

Journalist Kishor Ram of Janjwar was arrested on February 23, 2022 and charged under the Indian Penal Code.


The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the Hindu nationalist party led by current Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has been strategically targeting Indian journalists, specifically those critical of the Indian government, since it took power in 2014. In 2022, at least 194 journalists were targeted across the country and by state agencies, non-state political actors, and armed opposition groups.

Activists and human rights advocates have expressed grave concerns over the immense crackdown on free speech in India, according to Wired. Ram’s arrest was covered by the Committee to Protect Journalists, which called on the authorities to immediately drop all charges and any investigation against him.

Life and Activism

A FIR was filed against Kishor Ram in relation to his reporting on two occurrences — the death of a Dalit youth on February 13 and the alleged rape of two Dalit girls on February 18 — according to Janjwar.

Kishor Ram has reported heavily on issues related to marginalized castes and classes, according to the Editors Guild of India. The police accused Ram of “asking caste of people,” according to the Guild. The Guild released a press statement in response to Ram’s arrest, in which it demanded the immediate release of Kishor Ram and “urged the state administration and the law enforcement agencies to not use penal laws as tools of intimidation against journalists’ right to report on societal and caste based issues.”

According to The Indian Express, the police have also accused Kishor Ram of extorting money by creating fake news. CPJ Program Director Carlos Martínez de la Serna spoke on Ram’s arrest and said that it “shows India’s escalating intolerance toward journalists who are simply doing their jobs.”

Charges and Allegations

Kishor Ram was charged under Section 153A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc) of the Indian Penal Code, according to Scroll.

Current Status

Released on bail

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