Staff Correspondent

HASSAN: Over 200 journalists from the district staged a dharna in front of the Deputy Commissioner's office here on Thursday in protest against the alleged assault on some journalists by advocates on Wednesday. They also staged a dharna before the office of the Superintendent of Police and formed a human chain at N.R. Circle.

Deputy Commissioner K.H. Aswathanarayana Gowda received a memorandum from Hassan District Working Journalists Union president Shivanand Tagadur.

Mr. Tagadur demanded the arrest of 13 advocates whom the union held responsible for the assault and wanted them to pay compensation for damaged cameras and other equipment.

What sparked off the incident was the alleged assault on Jayaram, a senior advocate, by a client, Savithramma, on the court premises. Enraged by this, some junior advocates reportedly assaulted her and her husband, Rame Gowda.

On hearing the news, some journalists and photographers from two TV channels and two newspapers went to the court and spoke to Savithramma. Some advocates objected to this and allegedly assaulted the journalists and damaged their cameras.

Savithramma has been admitted to the Hassan Institute of Medical Sciences.

Complaints filed

Savithramma's complaint said Mr. Jayaram and some other advocates had assaulted her and outraged her modesty. A case has been registered against Mr. Jayaram and others.

Mr. Jayaram lodged a complaint against Savithramma saying that she tried to assault him with slippers. The police have registered a case against Savithramma as well.