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Media bodies condemn journalist Gauri Lankesh’s murder, PCI to hold protest meet today

The Editors Guild of India demands that the Karnataka government brings justice apart from instituting a judicial probe into the killing of the senior Kannada journalist.

india Updated: Sep 06, 2017 11:51 IST
Smriti Kak Ramachandran, New Delhi
Gauri Lankesh,Bangalore,P. Lankesh
Gauri Lankesh was the editor of Gauri Lankesh Patrike and often wrote against Sangh organisations and communal violence in the country.

Media bodies across the country, including the Press Club of India in New Delhi, have condemned the murder of senior Kannada journalist and Hindutva critic, Gauri Lankesh, who was shot dead at her house in Bengaluru on Tuesday.

According to the police, at least three suspects were involved and Lankesh was found dead on her verandah around 8pm with bullet wounds to her head and chest.

Lankesh, 55, was the daughter of famous poet-turned-journalist P Lankesh. She was the editor of Gauri Lankesh Patrike, writing often against Sangh organisations and communal violence in the country.

Expressing shock over “the brazen and dastardly killing”, the Indian Women’s Press Corps in the national Capital said Lankesh was known for her outspoken views and steadfast commitment to liberal values.

“She was a trenchant critic of obscurantism and conservative values. The silencing of a journalist in this manner has dangerous portents for Indian democracy. The IWPC demands that the government apprehend the perpetrators at the earliest and expose those behind this planned murder of a senior woman journalist,” the press corps said in a statement.

The Press Club of India, which is organising a protest march at 3 pm in association with the IWPC, described Lankesh as a “fearless and independent journalist who gave voice to many causes and always stood up for justice”. It has also demanded that the perpetrators be brought to book.

“The fact that she was shot dead at her Rajarajeshwari Nagar at a busy hour on Tuesday evening only indicates how fragile law and order situation has become in Bengaluru and miscreants and criminals are having a free run in the Capital city of Karnataka,” the PCI statement read.

The Editors Guild of India in a statement said her killing is an “ominous portent for dissent in democracy and a brutal assault on the freedom of the press”. The Guild demands that the Karnataka government acts with alacrity to bring the culprits to justice apart from instituting a judicial probe into the killing, it said.

Meanwhile, minister of state for information and broadcasting Rajyavardhan Rathore also tweeted his condolence and said: “Terrible news from Bengaluru about the heinous murder of Gauri Lankesh. I condemn all acts of violence against journalists.”

The Broadcast Editors Association has also demanded that the government should “act promptly to identify the culprits”.

“It is very unfortunate that a journalist meets such a fate...” the BEA said in a statement.

First Published: Sep 06, 2017 08:49 IST