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India’s war on whistleblowers

NEW DELHI, India — In India, the truth might set you free. Or it might land you behind bars. Or even dead.

Take the case of Naveen Sorinjee, a TV reporter jailed in Karnataka for exposing an assault on young couples by a far-right Hindu group. Sorinjee has inspired a hunger strike and a slew of editorials. But more than a two months after his arrest, he's still in the slammer. And he's not alone.

India this year plunged to its lowest ranking on Reporters Without Borders'world press freedom index since 2002, falling to 140 out of 179 countries, as governments around the country cracked down on free speech and allowed criminals, political “workers” and armed groups to attack journalists with impunity.

Meanwhile, since the right to information law gave rise to the anti-corruption movement, the number of bureaucrats, activists, and even policemen who were harassed, beaten, jailed and murdered for daring to expose government and corporate malfeasance has continued to grow, according to the Asia Center for Human Rights (ACHR).

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