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Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Mysuru: Urdu journalist assaulted at temple demolition protest site

Mohammed Safdar Kaiser was recording the speech of Vedike general secretary Jagadish Karanth when a group of Right-wing activists raised an objection to recording the event.

Written by Darshan Devaiah BP | Mysuru |
Updated: September 17, 2021 5:20:27 pm
Police rushed to rescue the journalist and took him inside a room near the Kote Anjaneya Swamy temple in front of the Mysuru palace premises. (Express photo)

A Mysuru-based Urdu newspaper journalist was allegedly assaulted during a protest by the Hindu Jagarana Vedike Thursday.

The members of the outfit were protesting against the demolition of temples at the North gate of Mysore Palace and the demolition of Adishakti Mahadevamma temple at Huchgani village in Nanjangud taluk in the district recently.

Mohammed Safdar Kaiser, chief editor of ‘The Daily Kausar’, a local Urdu newspaper, was recording the speech of Vedike general secretary Jagadish Karanth when members of the outfit raised an objection to recording the event. They demanded Kaiser to delete the recording and manhandled him on the spot, according to the police.

The police present at the spot rushed to rescue the journalist and took him inside a room near the Kote Anjaneya Swamy temple in front of the Mysuru palace premises while the enraged members of the outfit made repeated bids to hit him with sticks.

Mysuru DCP (law and order) Pradeep Gunti took the complaint from the journalist and also spoke to other mediapersons who were present at the spot.

Kaiser lodged a complaint at the Devaraja police station in the city. Meanwhile, president of Mysore District Journalist Association (MDJA) S T Ravikumar condemned the attack, wrote to the police commissioner demanding action against the assailants and demanded more security for journalists during such protests.

Speaking to indianexpress.com, Kaiser said, “I was there to cover the protest and was recording a video like other reporters. A few protesters asked me for my identity card and I asked them why they are asking only me? They didn’t listen to me and started attacking me. I was shocked that for no reason they started attacking me.”

“Police immediately stepped in and rescued me from the mob. I am thankful to the police and have submitted a complaint. As a mediaperson, I was doing my duty,” he added.

The national general secretary of Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) Abdul Majeed demanded the arrest of those who assaulted the journalist.

In a statement issued Friday, Majeed who severely condemned the incident, said “rise in incidents of Sangh Parivar workers assaulting journalists make for a dangerous development in the country and State. Now, a journalist in Mysuru is also attacked. The police were also not spared in the incident and it shows that the Sangh Parivar workers are indulging in disturbing peace and law and order. If the journalists don’t have security, what would be the fate of common people?”

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