The Press Club of India and the Indian Women’s Press Corps have expressed serious concern over the attack on journalists covering the communal violence in northeast Delhi since last Sunday.
“Several of them have been hospitalised. They have been punched and attacked by communal mobs , and police were either absent or have not come to help. Shockingly, mobs were checking religious credentials of journalists,” said the joint statement on Wednesday.
A television journalist sustained gunshot injuries, while another was hit in the face and has several teeth missing. “A woman journalist has also sustained injuries. Television media seem to have been specially targeted,” it said.
The organisations said: “We have little doubt the attackers actively sought to prevent videography or photography that may lead to them being identified. A lethargic police and politicians instigating communal violence cannot escape blame for attacks on the media.”
A few weeks ago, they said, journalists were physically assaulted by the police when they were reporting the violence during the Jamia protests.
“Earlier, police stood mutely while supporters of right-wing mobs that had attacked JNU heckled and hit journalists. We expect the authorities, particularly the police and the Union Home Ministry, to be alive to democratic sensibilities and ensure that media are not brought under physical assault,” they said.