Digipub, Press Club Express Solidarity Against Attack On Scribes

Online news portals through Digipub and the Press Club of India (PCI) called out the recent attacks against journalists where scribes in New Delhi were attacked while reporting the Mahapanchayat even as three others were arrested in Ballia, Uttar Pradesh.

On Sunday, at least five journalists were allegedly assaulted, heckled and groped while reporting on the Mahapanchayat organised by head priest of Dasna Devi temple Yati Narsinghanand. In Ballia, three journalists were arrested for reporting the class 12 English paper leak.

Also Read: How Yati Narsinghanand May Get Away With Hate Speech, Again

Political editor of The Caravan Hartosh Singh Bal said that it's problematic to see Delhi Police siding with the state in times of strife. The Delhi police was a mute spectator during the 1984 Sikh riots, they were silent during the February 2020 riots in Northeast Delhi and on Sunday when militant monk Narsinghanand called for Muslim genocide, he said.

He added that the ruling dispensation had a problem with journalists while the Hindutva mob had a problem with gender.

"The idea that women should stand up and ask questions is an issue," he said.

"Muslims are being singled out. The Karnataka hijab row and the more recent halal row is not about religion but a denial of education & livelihood," Bal added.

Also Read: Journalists Attacked At Delhi Hindu Mahapanchayat Hate Speech Event

Newslaundry editor-in-chief Abhinandan Sekhri announced that as an organisation Digipub was extending legal help for journalists who work with its member organization. "Two lawyers are heading this legal cell which has partnered with at least 20 law firms who have extended their assistance," Sekhri said. He added legal fees would also be covered for those journalists who cannot afford it.

Two of the journalists that were attacked during the Sunday event were reporters with Newslaundry. Sekhri said it was shameful that the Home Ministry was silent even as the attacks against journalists were increasing.

Lastly, Sekhri said that Digipub would send a memorandum to the Home Ministry, Delhi Police Commissioner, and DCP northwest Usha Rangrani highlighting the state of affairs.

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