Mamata orders probe into attack on journalists
“We condemn the incidents of violence against media. The chief minister has ordered an inquiry,” Education and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Partha Chatterjee said at a media meet.
At least a dozen journalists, photojournalists and channel camerapersons sustained various degrees of injuries after being assaulted while covering the <g data-gr-id="38">violence marred</g> polls in the city’s posh satellite township.
Chatterjee said the chief minister was gathering information on the incidents and those responsible for the attacks would be identified and dealt with administratively.
“The administration will look into the reasons, the circumstances that led to these incidents. We will also find out the agent provocateurs, and look into whether any political <g data-gr-id="46">party,</g> or any other interest group incited the violence.
“We want to categorically state that in West Bengal, rule of the law has been established under Mamata Banerjee’s leadership. As ruling party we will never want any breach of peace,” he said, accusing opposition parties Communist Party of India-Marxist, Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party of attempts to foment disturbance over the past few days.
“The opposition parties - CPI-M, BJP and the Congress - have no manpower. They don’t have people behind them. So, over the past few days, they were trying to create a situation which was akin to destroying democracy,” he alleged.
At least a dozen journalists, <g data-gr-id="62">photo journalists</g> and TV channel camerapersons sustained various degrees of injuries after being assaulted while covering polls to the Bidhannagar Municipal Corporation in the city’s posh satellite township on Saturday.
Two journalists of ABP Ananda - <g data-gr-id="39">Aritrik</g> Bhattacharya and Prakash Sinha - and the channel’s cameraperson Partha Sarathi Chakraborty were attacked by a mob while they were reporting about booth capturing in ward number 31 in Bidhannagar area.
A 24 <g data-gr-id="43">Ghanta</g> journalist Bikram Das and cameraperson <g data-gr-id="44">Mintu</g> Basak were also injured in the attack at the same spot.
“After we had recorded how a booth was being jammed, a gang of goons attacked me and the cameraperson, beating us mercilessly. They even snatched away the camera,” said a profusely bleeding Bhattacharya. Chakraborty was beaten with sticks and <g data-gr-id="54">rods,</g> and was rendered unconscious, the channel claimed.
Basak, who was hit on the head with a helmet, has been admitted to a private hospital. Other journalists who were subjected to similar assault include Tanmay <g data-gr-id="49">Dutta Biswas</g> and Sharmin Begum of Kolkata TV, Arka Dey and Dipankar Jana of Newstime, and photo journalist Sanjay Chatterjee of The Telegraph.
Bidhannagar Police Commissioner Jawed Shamim said police were looking into the matter.
“We are looking into the matter... if anybody lodges <g data-gr-id="37">formal</g> complaint, we will take action,” he said.