<i>EastMojo </i>reported how in 2017 the Border Roads Organisation had carried out a land acquisition survey of 3 km (out of the 9.5 km) near Taflagam village till Rocham in Arunachal Pradesh’s Anjaw district Credit: EastMojo image

Itanagar: The media fraternity in Arunachal Pradesh has strongly condemned the alleged threats issued to EastMojo correspondent Irani Sonowal Lepcha by former adviser to chief minister of Arunachal Pradesh, Sotai Kri.

A joint meeting of the Arunachal Press Club (APC), Arunachal Pradesh Union of Working Journalists (APUWJ) and Arunachal Electronic and Digital Media Association (AEDMA) was held at the premises of APC on Monday during which the telephonic intimidation and complaint lodged against the reporter at the Tezu police station were discussed at length.

The house was informed that following a report published in EastMojo titled ‘Arunachal: Land mafia near China border risking national security?’ on November 29, 2019, Kri, who also happens to be the former advisor to CM and whose name has been mentioned in the story, reportedly called the EastMojo correspondent on Monday and threatened her of dire consequences.

Also Read: Bid to ‘gag’ media in Arunachal, EastMojo journalist threatened

The complaint lodged against the reporter and four others by one Tenalum Taflam, claiming that he has been made a scapegoat in the news article, was also discussed.

It was, however, informed that Tenalum’s statement (which he now is reportedly refuting) was consensual and was taken without any pressure/force.

Meanwhile, taking cognizance of the matter, the press fraternity strongly condemned the intimidation while terming it as an attempt to suppress a media person from exercising her fundamental right to freedom of expression.

“Whoever is not happy or satisfied with the news report published has every right to file complaints through proper channels. However such heinous act of making intimidating calls to a journalist will not be accepted,” APC president Dodum Yangfo said.

Echoing Yangfo, APUWJ president Amar Sangno also cautioned against the efforts made to muzzle media freedom.

“A journalist has the right to pursue the truth in reporting as long as it is based on facts and no one can deter them from doing so by taking the law into their own hands,” Sangno said, adding that the APUWJ will take all the required steps to protect the safety and concern of the journalists.

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