Kerala

Probe launched against Press Club secretary

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Charge of outraging modesty of woman journalist

The Kerala police have opened a criminal inquiry against Thiruvananthapuram Press Club secretary M. Radhakrishnan on the charge of having publicly shamed a woman journalist and outraged her modesty.

The alleged incident, which has roiled the journalist community in Kerala and caused an outburst of protest across the social spectrum, had reportedly occurred at her house on Saturday night.

The accused and the complainant worked in the same office.

Circle Inspector K.R. Biju, who is the investigating officer, said that Radhakrishnan learned that neighbours had spotted the woman journalist with another male colleague of hers in front of her house at around 10 p.m.

The police said the accused gathered a few local people and raised a furore. He allegedly accused his colleagues of ‘immoral’ behaviour. The police said Radhakrishnan allegedly slapped the male journalist and demanded the colleagues apologise to the locals for their "inappropriate" behaviour and swear not to meet again after office hours.

The journalist reportedly told the police that Radhakrishnan trespassed on her home and threatened her in front of her children that he would upend her family life if she did not comply with his demand.

Investigators said the woman had arrived at the police station with her husband and lodged the complaint. She stated that she had called her colleague to run an errand for her children since her husband, a journalist, was working late.

The Network of Women in Media condemned the incident as a malicious attempt to impose a medieval and misogynist moral code on working journalists. A senior member of the collective said the insistence of the accused that women should behave and dress in "morally and culturally upright ways or face punishment" tantamount to moral policing.

When contacted, Radhakrishnan denied the allegation. He said he had gone to the spot to "vouch for the character" of his colleagues and rescue them from the wrath of locals who had objected to their presence in the residential neighbourhood at that hour of the night.

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Printable version | Dec 11, 2019 5:29:42 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/press-club-secretary-booked/article30168969.ece

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