:LUCKNOW: Close on the heels of a row related to arrest of scribe Prashant Kanojia by UP police and subsequent Supreme Court order for his immediate release, another journalist became victim of police extremity in Shamli district of western UP on Tuesday evening.
As per the sources, News 24 stringer Amit Sharma was assaulted brutally by Government Railway Police personnel, including SHO Rakesh Kumar and his aides, in Shamli while he was covering the derailment of a goods train near Dhimanpur gate of the city on Tuesday evening.
The altercation took place when a verbal dual broke out between Sharma and the GRP cops in the presence of a whole lot of journalists who were covering derailment of two wagons of a goods train.
Speaking to the media persons, Sharma claimed that GRP SHO Rakesh Kumar Upadhyay objected to his presence at the derailment site and also filming of the incident. The SHO and his aide, constable Sanjay Pawar, who were in plain clothes, even beat him up badly, kicked him, snatched his camera and phone when he continued to videograph the accident site.
Sharma claimed that he was then dragged to the GRP police station all the way and was put in the lockup where other cops joined the SHO and thrashed him further. The victim also claimed that the police atrocities continued in the lock up where he was stripped and the cops urinated wright into his mouth. As the videos of police atrocities on the scribe went viral on social media, a group of journalist rushed to the GRP police station and demanded Sharma’s release. They also sought action against the accused SHO and the staff involved in beating the scribe.
Taking cognizance of the incident through the videos present on social media, UP police, which oversee GRP, suspended the errant SHO Rakesh Kumar Upadhyay and constable Sanjay Pawar.
“We have come across a video where a journalist has been beaten up and put in the lockup. UP DGP OP Singh has ordered immediate suspension of GRP SHO Shamli Rakesh Kumar and constable Sanjay Pawar,” tweeted the UP police.
As per high official sources, Ghaziabad circle officer Ramesh Tripathi has also been directed by the DGP office to investigate the matter and submit his report.
According to Sharma, GRP cops targeted him as he had done a story exposing the shortcomings of Shamli GRP recently. The victim, however, demanded strict action not only against SHO and the constable but also against all those who had tortured him in the lockup.
Sharma was released on Wednesday morning. Local journalists gathered at GRP police station demanding action against all police personnel who were involved in the incident.
The Shamli incident is the second such incident where a journalist became victim of the police highhandedness. On Tuesday, the Supreme Court of India had directed the UP government to release journalist Prashant Kanojia, who was jailed for tweeting objectionable comments on UP CM Yogi Adityanath.