Agartala: Twenty-four cases have been registered in different police stations across eight districts for attack on journalists since 2020, said Tripura Police in a press statement.
The assistant inspector general (AIG) of police (law and order) Subrata Chakraborty said this list includes 7 this year till June 5.
He said that the Director General of Police (DGP) has taken note of the reports that appeared in the last few days in certain sections of the media expressing concern over the increasing incidents of violence against journalists and media persons and the failure of the police to take action against the perpetrators of such crimes.
“The DGP held a review meeting of all such cases in a meeting with the district SPs held through video conference. During the discussion with district SPs, it has been found that 17 cases were registered in 2020 and 7 were registered in 2021 as on date,” Chakbarorty said.
He also said that out of 24 cases registered, 16 cases have ended in chargesheet, three cases were compromised by the parties involved, while the remaining five cases are still under investigation.
The police also said that in cases where the victims were unable to identify the miscreants, all out efforts were made by police to identity them. Consequently, more than 15 persons were identified during investigation and chargesheeted.
“The investigation of cases registered was carried out purely on merit and evidence. The arrests were made in cases where the punishment was more than 7 years as per the laid down procedure and applicable sections of Criminal Procedure Code. In other cases notices were issued,” the statement informed.
The AIG also said that there is no separate law to deal with cases of media and hence only codified procedure was followed in all these cases.
“No media person ever complained to them about proper registration of cases or their investigations. This only shows that the complainants were satisfied with police action. Even in cases where the complaints were prima facie found to be exaggerated, the cases were registered in IPC sections which were in line with the contents of the complaint,” the press statement said.
The development comes barely a week after the residence of Samir Dhar, a correspondent of Aajkaal newspaper, reportedly came under attack by a group of miscreants.
The incident happened at Sripally area of Badharghat in southern Agartala on Saturday night. Aajkaal is a West Bengal-based Bengali newspaper.
Speaking with reporters, Dhar said that his residence along with some other neighbours came under attack by a group of miscreants on Saturday night.
“Since the change in government in 2018, my residence has faced such attacks thrice. The miscreants on Saturday night tried to enter my residence but couldn’t succeed. However, they vandalised the boundary walls and threatened me with dire consequences,” Dhar said.
Meanwhile, reacting to the press statement, Assembly of Journalist (AoJ) media secretary Samrat Choudhury said that the number is over 28 and most of them were registered after chief minister’s statement made in September last year.
According to the police data altogether 24 cases were registered, of these 14 cases were registered after the chief minister threatened the media at a public meeting on September 11 last year.
Biplab Kumar Deb received flak after he threatened what he termed, ‘some of the overexcited’ newspapers for allegedly creating confusion over the COVID-19 situation in the state. Deb was speaking at the inaugural ceremony of the special economic zone (SEZ) at Sabroom on Friday when he said that some newspapers were trying to confuse people of Tripura and said he would not ‘forgive them’.
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