KOCHI: Journalists were attacked by advocates at the Kerala High Court premises for the second consecutive day on Wednesday. Three women reporters had to seek shelter at the Registrar General’s office when the men in black turned violent and verbally abused them.
The clash was a continuation of the chain of incidents that had happened on Tuesday. The scuffle began when a group advocates forcefully evicted reporters from the media room and locked it up.
When the journalists moved towards the lift, advocates followed them and verbally abused them and prevented the scribes from entering the lift. In the meantime, police came to the rescue of the women journalists. Police escorted them to the chamber of the Registrar General who informed them that the media room has been closed temporarily.
The advocates then moved out of the court complex and took out a march. As the march taking place, the advocates attacked camera man of Media One TV.
The advocates also vented their ire against the shopkeepers near the High Court and some autorikshaw drivers, pelting stones at shops and autorikshaws. Journalists from different parts of the city, who came to know about the attack on their colleagues gathered near the HC and held a sit- in in front of the court, raising slogans.
An advocate even attempted to drive his vehicle on journalists. Taunting the scribes, the advocates also threw coins at them, calling them beggars. The tense situation snowballed into a street fight between the police and advocates soon when hundreds of advocates, shouting slogans against the police rushed towards the media persons and attempted to thrash them. The police had to resort to lathi charge to disperse the advocates. Later the issue was resolved after M P Dinesh, Kochi city police commissioner, intervened and promised to take action against the advocates.
Women reporters lodged a complaint with the Chief Justice. Advocates are learnt to have decided to abstain from court proceedings on Thursday.