A large number of journalists of the Capital city on Thursday staged a protest against the alleged manhandling of a reporter of a leading Oriya daily by some senior officials of the Commissionerate Police here on Wednesday.
The journalists, who came under the banner of Media Unity for Freedom of Press (MUFP), condemned the incident in which Somanath Sahu, reporter of ‘Dharitri', was prevented from attending a press conference at the office of the Deputy Commissioner of Police at Saheed Nagar and threatened of dire consequences for writing reports that went against the police. The officials, who allegedly barred the reporter concerned from attending the press conference under the instruction of Police Commissioner Bijay Kumar Sharma, include Deputy Commissioner of Police Himanshu Lal, Assistant Commissioner of Police (traffic) Nirmal Kumar Satpathy and Inspector-in-Charge of Kharavel Nagar police station Satyajit Mishra. The agitated journalists, who raised slogans against the erring police officials and demanded their immediate transfer from the city, decided to take out a procession and submit a memorandum to Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Saturday. Those who addressed the gathering of agitating journalists include editor of ‘Dharitri' Tathagata Saptapathy and veteran journalists Rabi Das, Prasanta Patnaik, Subhas Chandra Patnaik.