Expressing serious concern over the murder of two journalists in Bihar and Jharkhand, the Press Club of India Saturday demanded action against the culprits and sought a conducive atmosphere for free and fair functioning of the media in the country.
The “targeted killings” of senior journalist Rajdev Ranjan in Bihar and TV reporter Akhilesh Pratap Singh in Jharkhand were part of the attempts to “muzzle” the independent voice of the press, the journalists’ body said.
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“It is with increasing dismay we note the increase in attempts to target the press throughout the country, by denigrating them and if nothing else works, by eliminating them as has happened in these two cases,” it said in a statement.
Ranjan, bureau chief of Hindi daily Hindustan, was shot dead in Bihar’s Siwan district last evening while Singh, who worked for a local news channel, was gunned down on Thursday night in Jharkhand’s Chatra district triggering protests in the areas.
“We demand from the governments, both at the Centre and states to come down heavily on the culprits and also create an atmosphere conducive to the free and fair functioning of the media in the country,” added the statement.