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Court Turns Down Govt's Request To Ban Media Coverage Of Maoist Leader's Surrender

The Maoist leader is facing 128 cases. 

16/05/2017 7:36 PM IST | Updated 16/05/2017 7:37 PM IST
Hindustan Times via Getty Images

RANCHI -- The Jharkhand High Court on Tuesday refused to ban media reporting related to the surrender of Maoist commander Kundan Pahan.

"The state government lawyer requested the court to ban media reporting related to the surrender (of Kundan Pahan) but the court refused to do so. The court asked the government to file their reply on Pahan's surrender," said lawyer Hemant Kumar who had raised the issue before the court on Monday.

"The next hearing will take place after vacation," said Kumar. The high court will reopen on 7 June after the summer vacation.

The Jharkhand High Court had on Monday taken cognisance of media reports regarding the Maoist commander's surrender.

Hemant Kumar had brought the media reports to the notice of the court. Taking suo moto cognisance, the issue was converted into a Public Interest Litigation (PIL).

Meanwhile, All Jharkhand Students Union (AJSU) legislator Vikas Munda's hunger strike demanding a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) probe over the surrender of Kundan Pahan continued for the third day on Tuesday. He has also demanded that the Maoist commander should be hanged.

AJSU is the alliance partner of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

Janata Dal-United's (JD-U) Jharkhand unit President Jaleshwar Mahto met him and extended support to his demand. Vikas Munda's father Ramesh Singh Munda, then JD-U legislator and former minister, was gunned down by Kundan Pahan in 2008.

The Ranchi Bar Association has announced that no lawyer will fight Pahan's case.

Pahan was carrying Rs 15 lakh reward and facing 128 cases. He surrendered before police on Sunday. He was handed over a cheque for Rs 15 lakh just as all surrendered Maoists are given.

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