Twitterfolk have accused media network AajTak’s Minakshi Kandwal of doxing a minor who has participated in the online protests against the rape in Hathras.
The horrific caste-based incident of sexual violence at Hathras, Uttar Pradesh has once again brought the intersecting systemic issues of caste- and gender-based violence into the limelight.
Although – and horrifically so – such cases are more common than the public believes; this particular instance has people across the country online and out in the streets protesting.
On 5th October, the hashtag #AajTakTargetsChildren began gaining traction, accusing the news network’s Minakshi Kandwal of doxing a minor girl. Kandwal has been said to have used a Facebook post by the minor to highlight the network’s stance of the protests being an ‘international conspiracy.’
Matter of urgent concern:— Saket Gokhale (@SaketGokhale) October 5, 2020
Anchor @MinakshiKandwal of @aajtak ran a campaign today doxxing a minor girl who made protest cards about Hathras protest. Aaj Tak is calling it an “international conspiracy”.
Protect our children from these monsters. #AajTakTargetsChildren
Doxing is the bringing of private information (names, identities, contact details, etc.) onto a public platform with malicious intent.
Although laws against doxing in India are not particularly well-defined, it is nonetheless a violation of a minor’s right to privacy to reveal their identity publicly, and punishable under Section 74 of the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015.
It is extremely dangerous to publish a minor’s identity on a public platform for any reason. In specific situations, such as the volatile aftermath of the Hathras incident, this can lead to threats and violence against the minor in question.
Amnesty International, whose India chapter was recently forced to press pause the country, published a report in 2018 which reveals that the fear of doxing causes women across the world to silence themselves, self-censor, and often avoid or leave social media platforms.
With the Hathras crime itself being politicised by caste disbelievers, and support for the rapists/murderers coming from politicians and Savarna groups, this additional breach of the law is one more crime against young women in this country.
As of 6th October, no official report has been made regarding AajTak’s violation of the law.
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