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Indian journalist who filmed kids eating salt-roti booked for cheating and criminal conspiracy

Mirzapur: The Yogi Adityanath government in Uttar Pradesh has filed a case against the journalist, who shot the video of school children being served roti with salt for mid-day meal in Mirzapur.

Pawan Jaiswal, a local journalist with Jansandesh Times, according to Gulf News report, was booked on charges of cheating and criminal conspiracy, based on a complaint by the Block Education Officer of the area, which accused him and a representative of the local village head, of conspiring to defame the Uttar Pradesh government. 

In the video from the Mirzapur school, children were seen sitting on the floor and eating rotis with salt.

However, the three-page First Information Report (FIR) mentions that only rotis were cooked in the school on the day the video was shot. 

It adds that the village head’s representative should have arranged for vegetables, instead of calling a reporter to the school premises.

A tweet about the case:

via @Benarasiyaa : The @UPGovthas now filed an FIR against the #Mirzapur reporter who filmed kids eating roti and salt, saying he entered into a ‘conspiracy’ with local village head’s rep to ‘defame’ govt. In same FIR , govt accepts only roti was cooked in meal that day ! https://t.co/OdRz7KZSLI— Alok Pandey (@alok_pandey) September 2, 2019

The FIR also says that Jaiswal shot the video and forwarded it to a news agency. It was widely shared on the social media and defamed the state government, it adds.

After the video went viral on the social media, Mirzapur District Magistrate Anurag Patel had said: “I ordered an inquiry and the incident was found to be true. 

Prima facie, it is the fault of the teacher in charge of the school and the supervisor at the gram panchayat. Both have been suspended.”

The website of the Uttar Pradesh Mid Day Meal Authority — the body overseeing the scheme in the state — describes an elaborate menu that is supposed to be served to the children at the state-run primary schools. 

It includes pulses, rice, rotis and vegetables. Fruits and milk are included on certain days, according to the meal chart.

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