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Chennai Man Who Makes Videos 'Critical' of Modi Arrested by UP Police for 'Creating Panic'

In several of his videos, Manmohan Mishra slammed Modi and the BJP government over its policies and its failure in handling the second wave of COVID-19.

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New Delhi: The Uttar Pradesh Police on August 14 arrested a 62-year-old man from Chennai after he had allegedly made remarks criticising Prime Minister Narendra Modi in one of the videos he posted on his YouTube channel, The News Minute has reported.

Manmohan Mishra from Chennai makes videos in Hindi and posts them on YouTube though his low views count suggest they are watched by hundreds and not thousands or millions. Mishra, whose channel goes by the name ‘Munmohan Mishra’, originally hails from Jaunpur, Uttar Pradesh, but has been living in Chennai for 35 years, according to police.

The UP police, as per a New Indian Express report, says that his arrest was necessitated because some people in the state had taken objection to his videos, particularly his alleged criticism of Modi, and had lodged a complaint at Kotwali police station in UP. Mishra’s channel only has 700 subscribers, and most of his videos have less than 200 views. Only his latest video, posted on August 13, in which he allegedly made critical remarks about Modi, garnered over 1,100 views.

The August 13 video refers to the 2002 Godhra riots of Gujarat, accusing Modi of using “deaths of those killed in that violence to ask for votes and became chief minister of state again”. In several of his videos, Mishra slams Modi and the BJP government over its policies and its terrible failure in handling the second wave of COVID-19. Some of his videos put forward some conspiracy theories surrounding Modi, the US and India’s ties with its neighbours China and Pakistan. Mishra also described Modi as a “mafia head”, accusing him of destabilising the nation.

According to UP Police, Mishra has been charged for a six-month-old video, where he had sought the resignation of the prime minister. Some six months ago Mishra reportedly also took part in a protest in Shahjahanpur in Uttar Pradesh, and is known to have circulated videos against Modi, the police said.

The Indian Express quoted a police officer from the Kotwali PS as saying Mishra had created panic: “In his videos, he says things like at least three people will die from each family in the third wave… and around 54 crore people will die in India. All this was creating panic among the public.”

The UP Police had reached Chennai two days prior to Mishra’s arrest, as per Arul Santhosa Muthu, the assistant commissioner of police (ACP) in Madhavaram in Chennai. The UP Police had informed the Madhavaram police station before taking Mishra into custody. Mishra was then produced in front of the Madhavaram magisterial court by the UP police, where they were granted a transit remand. The charges against Mishra are not yet known.

Note: This story has been edited to add a quote from an officer from the Kotwali police station