The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ)
strongly condemns the attacks on newspersons on professional assignment during
a day-long general strike called on August 28 by a youth-led political organisation
in the north-eastern Indian state of Assam.
According to reports received from the Journalists’ Union
of Assam (JUA), a constituent unit of the IFJ-affiliate, the Indian
Journalists’ Union, a number of journalists were the victims of planned and
targeted attacks that day.
Amulya Kumar Nath, correspondent for TV channel
Newslive in Goalpara district in the western part of Assam, was attacked and
his camera snatched. He was subsequently admitted to the local government
hospital. Two other journalists, Jayanta Kumar Das of Prime News and Raju Sahu
of the DY 365 TV channel were attacked at Barpeta Road and their motorcycles
and cameras damaged.
Dibyajyoti Nath, Ankur Das, Sourav Borkotoki and
Amarjyoti Talukdar - all Tezpur based journalists -- were invited to the
Bhojkhowa area to cover the general strike by its sponsors. Once they arrived
there, they were assaulted by these same persons.
Aside from these instances, Joyjyoti Gogoi a reporter for
Newslive in Sivsagar district was badly injured when police used batons to
control a protesting crowd.
The IFJ calls on the authorities to promptly identify
those responsible for these acts of violence and take appropriate action. These
attacks violate the basic norm of free movement of media personnel, even on days of general strike since the
public have the right to be informed reliably about the day’s events.
information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +612 9333 0918
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