The Editors Guild of India strongly condemned the murder of senior journalist and editor Gauri Lankesh. Lankesh was shot dead outside her house in Bangalore on Tuesday. “Gauri Lankesh was a known critic of the Central government on key issues and had fearlessly expressed her views in the newspaper she edited as well as in other forums. Her killing is an ominous portent for dissent in democracy and a brutal assault on the freedom of the press,” a statement released by the Guild said.
Signed by the President of the Guild, Raj Chengappa, General Secretary Prakash Dubey and Treasurer Kalyani Shankar, the statement also demanded a judicial probe into the matter. “The Editors Guild of India demands that the Karnataka Government acts with alacrity to bring the culprits to justice apart from instituting a judicial probe into the killing,” it said.
The 55-year-old editor of the Kannada weekly Gauri Lankesh Patrike was shot dead by unidentified assailants at the entrance of her home in Bengaluru West on Tuesday evening. Four bullets were pumped into her chest from a close range at her doorstep after she had stepped out of her car and opened the gates to her home, which lay in darkness, at around 8 pm.
Members of the literary community spoke out strongly against the murder, calling it an attempt to “silence those who believe in democracy and decency”. Tamil writer Perumal Murugan, who was hounded into silence in 2015 by protests against his work, said, “One thought that this sort of sentiment had died down. This incident proves that the climate of hatred and intolerance seems to be alive. We need to respond to this attack with awareness and continued diligence.”
Historian Ramachandra Guha said Lankesh’s murder was “part of a pattern that links the deaths of (Narendra) Dabholkar, (M M) Kalburgi and (Govind) Pansare”.