06 November 2017

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Tamil Nadu cartoonist G Bala arrested over caricature of CM Palaniswami

Tamil Nadu cartoonist G Bala arrested over caricature of CM Palaniswami

Cartoonist G Bala alias Balakrishnan was arrested in Chennai by a special Tirunelveli District Crime Branch Police team led by an inspector, a police release said.

Bala, 36, was arrested on the basis of a complaint filed by Tiruneveli district collector Sandeep Nanduri, who was also caricatured in the cartoon along with the city police chief.

“G Bala of Chennai has drawn cartoons about Tirunelveli District top officials and posted them on social media and in this regard the District Collector had given a complaint,” the release said.

Police said he was arrested under Section 67 in the Information Technology Act (Punishment for publishing or transmitting obscene material in electronic form) and Section 501 of the Indian Penal Code (Printing or engraving matter known to be defamatory).

Indian Express reported that Bala had posted the cartoon on October 24 night. “Over 38,000 people shared the cartoon. Taking notice of the cartoon, the district collector reported the matter to the Chief Secretary and DGP has ordered the arrest,”

The cartoon was uploaded on a website on October 26, days after a man and his wife set themselves and their two kids afire at the Tirunelveli Collectorate complex allegedly due to harassment by a money-lender.

The cartoon shows a burning child lying on the ground, evidently immolating, while the Tirunelveli police commissioner, the collector and the Chief Minister gathered around the child, with their eyes downcast, covering their nudity with cash bundles.

The cartoon that led to his arrest on Sunday morning criticized Tirunelveli police commissioner, district collector, and the Chief Minister, holding them responsible for the death of an entire family, who self-immolated before the Tirunelveli collectorate two weeks ago.

As the family had killed themselves in broad daylight allegedly after they were threatened by private money lenders and the district collector and police failed to act on family’s six petitions in the last two months, Bala’s cartoon taking on authorities went viral, shared by thousands of people in social media.

India needs say to good bye to criminal defamation cases.

Cartoon is a Cartoon in a real democracy no one goes to jail for drawing cartoons.

Reality views by sm –

Monday, November 6, 2017

Tags – Cartoon Drawing Crime India TN G Bala Arrested