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Muslim journalist suspended for not publishing unverified anti-TNA news

K.M Razool, a senior Tamil language journalist, has taken legal action against his former employer, Capital FM, after he was suspended for not publishing unverified content which would attack TNA leadership and favour the SLPP candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa in the lead up to the Sri Lankan general election.

Razool has reported that he was nearly assaulted after he refused to produce news which specifically attacked TNA (Tamil National Alliance) leadership as well as the UNP (United National Party). The content he was asked to publish would have targeted TNA MP M.A. Sumanthiran, and Sambanthan.

Suspicions of unjust political influence within Capital FM have followed this case as Capital FM’s Chairman, Vincendrarajan Sathasivam, is the father-in-law of MP Angajan Ramanadan, SLFP’s (Sri Lanka Freedom Party) Jaffna District Organizer. The SLFP has reached a political agreement with the SLPP (Sri Lanka’s People Front) to support Gotabaya for the presidential election.

Razool was suspended on 16 October for “alleged insubordination”.

Speaking to reporters, Razool stated:

“If my refusal to publish doctored and unverified content to the favour of Gotabaya Rajapaksa amounts to insubordination, that in itself proves how biased Capital FM is. I repeatedly, during several editorial meetings, raised my voice in defiance saying that I will not publish fake content, which is a serious violation of media ethics. I do not know what sort of intimidation I may have to face in the aftermath of this incident. However, journalists in Sri Lanka who uphold ethics and professionalism have no one to report to in the face of such injustices”.

Read more here.