Mumbai Journalist Murdered, Two Beaten: Journalists’ Forum Demands Action

JFA Demands Action Over Mumbai Journalist Murder

Raghavendra Dube, a middle aged journalist, was found dead on July 17, in a Mumbai suburb, soon after his assigned coverage of a police raid on a night bar.

Dube was reportedly beaten and stabbed to death and his body sustained several deep injuries. He was not the only one attacked. Santosh Mishra and Shashi Sharma were also assigned to cover the police raid and both were assaulted by bar staffers.

Journalists’ Forum Assam (JFA) expressed serious concern after a third journalist was murdered this year in Mumbai. The Forum has demanded action be taken by the authorities.

The Journalists’ Forum says killers of media workers often escape accountability, and that serves to encourage perpetrators of these crimes to kill more journalists.

Maharashtran media organizations condemned the killing and demanded action be taken against those responsible for the attacks on the journalists and for Dube’s death.

A statement released by the Paris-based Reporters Without Borders (RSF) urged the authorities to investigatate the barbaric murder of Dube to “shed light on all the circumstances and bring those responsible to justice.”

“We reiterate our appeal to the Indian authorities to establish a national plan for the protection of journalists and other news providers in order to ensure the safety of those who contribute to the public debate in Indian society,” added the RSF statement.

Violence against journalists in India usually goes unpunished. An alarming number of journalists have been killed in connection with their coverage of corruption, politics, crime or other sensitive subjects, but the government has not yet adopted any measures to protect media personnel.

“It is shocking that Dube’s murder was reported soon after the killing of two journalists (Jagendra Singh of UP and Sandeep Kothari of MP) in the month of June this year,” said a JFA statement issued by president Rupam Barua and secretary Nava Thakuria adding that everyone must work together to improve India’s press freedom index which is presently at 136th position out of 180 countries in the RSF list.

Hemanta Kumar Nath is a correspondent in Assam, India, who reports on local news in Assam, the north east Indian state.