Guwahati, October 17: Journalists’ Forum Assam (JFA) has expressed dismay over relentless incidents of killing of scribes in different parts of the country and urged the Union government in New Delhi to formulate special protection laws to safeguard the media personnel and ensure justice to the bereaved families.
The latest incident of journo-murder has been reported from Andhra Pradesh, where a young reporter was hacked to death by miscreants. K Satyanarayana, 50, who worked for Telugu daily ‘AndhraJyothy’, was targeted at Annavaram village of East Godavari district on the night of October 15, 2019.
“Local scribes revealed that Satyanarayana was targeted in an earlier occasion too and it was reported to the police. We appeal AP chief minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy to take personal initiative to identify the culprits along with their motives and punish them under the law,” said JFA in a statement issued to the media.
Previously, a Kushinagar (Uttar Pradesh) journalist was murdered allegedly by his neighbours. Radheyshyam Sharma, 55, a local reporter of Hindi daily ‘Aaj’ and also a part-time teacher in a private college, was killed by slitting his throat on 10 October. The police have already nabbed an accused and UP chief minister YogiAdityanath has reportedly asked them to solve the case urgently.
Prior to these incidents, a Thiruvananthapuram based scribe (K Muhammed Basheer, 35) lost his life as a running vehicle, driven by IAS officer Sriram Venkitaraman had mown down the Malayalamdaily ‘Siraj’ reporter on the street on 3 August. Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan had already made it clear that proper actions would be taken against Venkitaraman, who is presently under suspension.
Earlier three incidents were reported from Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh this year, however, all three cases need specific investigations if the journalists were targeted because of their journalistic exercises. A magazine editor of Nityanand Pandeyand a news channel contributor Anand Narayan of Maharashtra were killed in separate incidents. Similarly an MP freelancer, Chakresh Jain was found dead with severe burn injuries.
“We as a nation lost six journalists (Navin Nischal, Vijay Singh, Sandeep Sharma, Syed Shujaat Bukhari, Achyuta N Sahu and Chandan Tiwari) to assailants last year. We also demand a national action plan to safeguard our interest in the line of military, police and physicians on duty” added the JFA statement issued by its president Rupam Barua and secretary Nava Thakuria.