Hyderabad, August 16: The Indian Journalists Union (IJU) has expressed shock at the murder of two young rural journalists in a week in Andhra Pradesh and Bihar and demanded “authentic probes” into the incidents and compensation for the families.
In a statement issued on Monday, IJU said, “It is so unfortunate to lose two promising scribes to assailants. We urge both Andhra Pradesh government-led YS Jagan Mohan Reddy and Nitish Kumar-led Bihar government to conduct thorough investigations so that the culprits face punishments under relevant laws,” said K Sreenivas Reddy, president of IJU, a national union of journalists.
Television reporter Manish Kumar Singh from Bihar was found dead days after he went missing. The semi-decomposed body of the 30-year-old journalist, who worked for Sudarshan news channel, was recovered in Champaran locality on August 10. His body was mutilated and both eyes were removed.
Both his father and Sudarshan channel editor Suresh Chavhanke lodged police complaints, following which two individuals, Mohammad Arsad Alam and Amarendra Singh, were arrested by the police in connection with the crime.
Earlier, another scribe from Andhra Pradesh was killed by two individuals. Chenna Keshav (35), who worked as a reporter with EV5 YouTube channel, was stabbed to death by a suspended police constable (Venkata Subbaiah) along with Nageswara Rao on August 8. It is understood that Keshav was targeted because of his series of news-reports on corruption and gambling issues.
The accused policeman faced the departmental suspension because of media reports on his illegitimate activities.
“Two Indian journalists namely Ashu Yadav and Sulabh Srivastava lost their lives to assailants during the first half of 2021. Meanwhile, an acclaimed Indian photojournalist Danish Siddiqui was killed by the Taliban in Afghanistan. Now we have lost two more scribes,” said Nava Thakuria, an IJU enthusiast and PEC’s India representative.