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Two journalists covering the recent anti-Muslim violence in Tripura were taken into police custody on Sunday on charges of spreading communal disharmony, ANI reported. The action has sparked widespread condemnation from press organisations. The channel they work for, HW News, and civil liberties activists have questioned the legality of their detention.

On Sunday morning, Tripura Police handed over the first information report to journalists Samriddhi Sakunia and Swarna Jha, filed on the complaint of a person named Kanchan Das. He had alleged that Sakunia and Jha made an “instigating speech” against the Hindu community and the Tripura government while visiting people from the Muslim community in the Unakoti district’s Paul Bazaar area.

In tweets posted in the morning, Sakunia and Jha alleged that they were being held captive in a hotel in Dharmanagar sub-division of North Tripura district. They finally managed to leave the state in the afternoon, but the police of neighbouring Assam detained them in Karimganj district and handed them over to the Tripura Police.

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