Chhattisgarh scribes want BJP to 'throw out' four party leaders who 'thrashed' journalists

With the BJP not taking any action against the accused BJP leaders, the media persons launched an indefinite dharna from Sunday morning.

Published: 03rd February 2019 08:52 PM  |   Last Updated: 03rd February 2019 09:48 PM   |  A+A-

Chhattisgarh-journalists

Journalists at Raipur press club protesting against BJP leaders thrashing a journalist and manhandling another at the party’s state head office. (Photo | EPS)

Express News Service

RAIPUR: The disgruntled journalist fraternity in Chhattisgarh began an indefinite sit-in demonstration outside the Raipur press club on Sunday seeking from the BJP to expel their four party functionaries who are accused of thrashing a journalist and manhandling another at the party’s state head office — Ekatma Parisar.

The reporters Suman Pandey and Vinod Dongre, working with news-portal The Voices.in, were on their assignment to cover the BJP’s introspection meeting on the poll debacle held at the party office.

According to Pandey, he was carrying out a video recording of the proceedings of BJP meeting at Ekatma Parisar office where the ‘party leaders were involved in the altercation and even scuffle during
the meeting’.

On the basis of a complaint lodged by Pandey, an FIR was registered against the four BJP functionaries who were arrested on Saturday late night but later released on bail.

“I was forced by BJP Raipur district president Rajiv Agrawal and three others to delete the video of the scuffle. When I refused they started beating me and forced me to edit out the recorded clippings. Later I was not allowed to move out of the BJP office for 20 minutes”, Pandey, who has sustained injuries, said.

The BJP though claimed that the party had expressed its regret over the incident.

READ | Four BJP men held for thrashing journalist in Chhattisgarh

“We have served notices to all four and after getting their reply, the report will be sent to the party central
leadership for further action”, said a senior BJP leader Brijmohan Agrawal.

However, with the BJP not taking any action against the accused BJP leaders, the media persons launched an indefinite dharna from Sunday morning. “We demand they (accused BJP members) should be expelled
from the party and arrested under the non-bailable offence. The state government must bring in journalist protection bill during the upcoming budget session”, the Raipur press club president Damu Ambadare said.

Citing the incident as unfortunate, the managing editor of the Voices.in Shishir Roy Choudhary asserted that to ensure such disgraceful situation doesn’t recur, there should be stern and deterrent action
against those responsible.

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