The Gauhati Press Club (GPC) has slammed Assam minister of state for health and BJP leader Pijush Hazarika after he allegedly threatened a state TV journalist.
In an audio clip that has gone viral, minister Pijush Hazarika can be heard intimidating a TV journalist over the phone for airing a news report related to his wife, Aimee Baruah.
The Gauhati Press Club has strongly condemned the act of intimidation against the journalist.
“The audio clip where Minister and BJP candidate from Jagiroad constituency Pijush Hazarika is reportedly heard intimidating a television journalist over the phone for airing a news report is highly condemnable and cannot be condoned at any cost,” Gauhati Press Club said in a statement.
The GPC further said, “it is very unbecoming of a public representative to threaten a journalist of dire consequences, no matter what.”
“At a time when the protection of journalists has become a cause of concern, such an uncalled-for attitude by a public representative comes as a shocker,” said the Gauhati Press Club statement, jointly issued by General Secretary Sanjoy Ray and President Manoj Kumar Nath.
“If the minister had any complaint related to the content or authenticity of any news report, he could have approached the appropriate authorities for redressal,” the statement said.
Terming the minister as having a ‘power-drunk attitude’, the journalists’ organisation said it “has taken politicking to a new low.”
The Gauhati Press Club demanded that “appropriate action should be taken against the minister by the Election Commission after verifying the authenticity of the audio clip.”
The GPC also demanded that the safety and security of journalists should be ensured by the Election Commission and the state government.