An Indian court has jailed a freelance political cartoonist on charges of sedition. Aseem Trivedi is being held for a week so he can be questioned by police in Mumbai. The opposition says the government is trying to “shut up” critics.
His arrest was prompted by a complaint from a local political activist who reported to the police, that Trivedi’s work was offensive to the country.
Following Monday’s outcry the government is now saying it would review this case.
"If you try to shut peoples' mouth, public anger will erupt violently," the cartoonist's father, Ashok Trivedi, told CNN-IBN.
Ashok Trivedi also said his son has been persecuted since he got involved in the anti-corruption campaign led by activist Anna Hazare, which is calling on India’s middle class to rise up against the ‘corrupt’ government.
Trivedi’s redesign of Indian national symbols featured during December’s protest demos in Mumbai. The four lions were replaced with four wolves while the national slogan "truth shall prevail" in his version read "corruption shall prevail."
In 2012 Trivedi was one of two winners of the 2012 US-based "Courage in Editorial Cartooning Award".
Trivedi is not the first man in India to suffer from the censorship and intolerance to criticism. Five months ago a university professor was arrested for forwarding a cartoon caricature of a local chief minister. Also a farmer was arrested for publically questioning the chief minister on her farm policy.