‘Journalist’ who reported TikTok video on Jharkhand lynching had himself justified lynchings

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The Mumbai Police has initiated action against a TikTok user group after they posted an objectionable video on the lynching of Tabrez Ansari. TikTok has removed the video and suspended the group from its platform after one Twitter user, who identifies himself as a journalist, reported the matter to the Mumbai Police. The cops took notice of Varun Singh’s viral tweet and initiated action against the TikTok user group, whose members are identified as Faisal Shaikh, Hasnain Khan, Faiz Baloch, Adnan Shaikh and Shadan Farooqui.

TikTok

After the Mumbai Police registered a complaint in the matter, the short video-messaging app released a statement announcing that it had suspended the TikTok accounts of the users seen in the video. “The video in question, which has violated our Community Guidelines, is no longer available on TikTok. Such irresponsible acts will not be tolerated on our platform, hence we have suspended three user accounts and are cooperating with law enforcement agencies,” news agency IANS quoted a statement from TikTok.

In the controversial video, a member of the TikTok group Team 07 was seen saying, “You may have killed that innocent Tabrez Ansari, but tomorrow if his children avenge the murder, don’t say that Muslims are terrorists.”

User Varun Singh, who identifies himself as a journalist and the treasurer of Mumbai Press Club, tweeted the video by tagging the Mumbai Police asking them to take action. His tweet went viral in no time with thousands of likes and retweets. Soon it emerged that the Mumbai Police had registered a complaint filed by one Shiv Sena worker.

Moments later several social media users took to Twitter to tag the Mumbai Police asking if they planned to take similar action against Singh, who had justified mob lynchings in the past. One user wrote, “Hello @MumbaiPolice , this man is justifying lynching. Do you plan to take action, or is it limited to certain sections of society?”



Writing in 2012 on Twitter, the Mumbai Press Club treasurer had said, “No wonder ppl lynch the criminals. The court makes you feel humiliated. Incident that took place in 2007, witness examination in 2012.”

 

Caught with glaring hypocrisy, Singh took to Twitter to justify his old tweet. He wrote, “So some enthusiasts dug out one of my tweet from 2012. The incident took place in 2007, a man had molested a girl & I had intervened. I along with others dragged the molester to police station. I recorded my statement & was only person to testify in the Court in 2012.”

But, it wouldn’t be wrong to ask how the tweet by this self-claimed conscience-keeper justifying mob lynchings was any different to the video posted by TikTok users, who are now facing a probe by the Mumbai Police.

Ansari was lynched to death by a mob, which had also forced him to chant Jai Shri Ram and Jai Hanuman when he had come home to celebrate Eid and get married,in Jharkhand last month. The 24-year-old Muslim man worked in Pune as a welder.

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