Journalists condemn attack during Bengal municipal polls

Updated - October 08, 2015 04:10 pm IST

Published - October 06, 2015 12:00 am IST - Kolkata:

Scribes during a rally in Kolkata on Monday protesting against the brutal attack on scribes on duty to cover municipal elections on October 3.- Photo: Special Arrangement

Scribes during a rally in Kolkata on Monday protesting against the brutal attack on scribes on duty to cover municipal elections on October 3.- Photo: Special Arrangement

Hundreds of journalists hit the streets in Kolkata on Monday in protest against the assault on several journalists during the elections at Bidhanngar Municipal Corporation last week.

Journalists, photo-journalists and technical staffs associated with a host of media organisation, representing both the electronic and the print media and catering to different languages, assembled in front of the Press Club of Kolkata to condemn the attacks.

Anindya Sengupta, secretary of the Press Club, Kolkata, said the journalists had not assembled “to change the government in power but they had assembled to protest attack on fellow journalists.”

“We are here to assert, that a journalists do not change under duress,” he said.

Senior journalists raised questions on the remarks made by Trinamool Congress leader and Education Minister Partha Chatterjee. Mr Chatterjee had said, journalists, like outsiders, are not allowed inside the polling booths.

“How can a top leader [Partha Chatterjee] comment like that is what surprises me,” said a senior journalist, Prasun Acharya.

Three arrested

Meanwhile, the Bidhannagar City Police arrested three persons in connection with assault on the journalists.

The arrested — Ashish Ghosh, Bittu Das, Gopal Routh — are produced before the lower court with prayer of test identification parade.

“These arrests are just an attempt to fool the people. Those arrested will be booked for bailable charges and released on bail,” Asok Kumar Ganguly, retired Supreme Court Judge and former chief of the State Human Rights panel said.

Earlier the State's Election Commission had stalled the counting of the polls following large scale violence and malpractices in the Saturday's civic polls in Biddhannagar and Asansol Municipal Corporation.

Civil society slams attack

Slamming the Trinamool government for infringing democracy in the State, a host of civil society members including actor Soumitra Chatterjee, actor-director Aparna Sen, renowned thespian Rudraprasad Sengupta and actor Kaushik Sen dubbed the violence a “black spot on the democracy.”

“We as civil society members do not and will not canvass for any political party. What we can do is to ensure that the common people can exercise their right to vote freely and fairly,” Mr. Sen said.

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