DELHI: Taking suo motu cognisance of an incident in which a journalist was allegedly beaten up by police in Uttar Pradesh's Shamli district, the Press Council of India has set up a fact-finding committee and sought a reply from the state government, among others.
The fact-finding committee, comprising Jaishankar Gupta and Uttam Chandra Sharma, Members, Press Council of India, will visit Shamli on Saturday to ascertain the details of the incident.
The Press Council of India (PCI) has taken suo motu cognisance of the alleged attack on Amit Sharma of News 24 channel, at Shamli, a PCI statement said.
It has sought a reply from the chief secretary, director general of police, the Uttar Pradesh government, and the Senior Superintendent of Police, GRP, Shamli.
The council expresses concern over such incident, which tends to undermine the freedom of the press, the statement said.
In a purported video of the incident, which went viral on social media late Tuesday night, the accused Government Railway Police (GRP) personnel, dressed in plain clothes, can be seen repeatedly slapping and punching television journalist Sharma. Subsequently, the scribe was detained by railway policemen.
Police registered a case against the four personnel, including Station House Officer Rakesh Kumar, on Wednesday under Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections pertaining to causing hurt, insult, robbery and wrongful confinement, GRP Superintendent of Police Subhash Chand Dubey said.
The incident took place after the policemen entered into an argument with Sharma when he was covering the derailment of a goods train in Shamli.
Sharma has alleged that he was thrashed by the GRP personnel and put in a lockup. "They forced me to take my clothes off and urinated on me," the scribe said. However, this charge was denied by the GRP.