January 31, 2021 6:34:23 pm
Two persons, including a jawan from the Assam Rifles, were booked by the state police for allegedly assaulting a journalist on duty at Belonia in South Tripura district four days ago, officials said.
Speaking to indianexpress.com on Sunday, an officer from Tripura Police headquarters said that Ashok Dasgupta, a reporter with a local news channel, lodged a complaint against Ranjan Nandi, an Assam Rifles personnel, and Sanju Nandi for wrongful restraint and physical assault when the former was on duty on January 27.
However, the state police also filed a counter case against the journalist for allegedly outraging the modesty of the soldier’s wife along with other charges. The case was registered on the jawan’s complaint.
“Both cases are being investigated. No arrest has been made so far,” the officer said.
Dasgupta told indianexpress.com that he was on his way to cover the submission of a memorandum over a road project at Satmura to the district magistrate of South Tripura on January 27 when the jawan and the other accused blocked his way and assaulted him.
“Ranjan punched me in the face and beat me up with a rod. As some locals rushed to my rescue, they took my phone and DSLR (camera). The camera wasn’t returned,” Dasgupta said.
He was initially taken to Belonia Hospital from where he was referred to Govind Ballabh Panth (GBP) Hospital. He is currently under treatment at Tripura Medical Hospital at Hapania.
“I am a bit better now. I received head injuries on my head chest and torso. I was attacked on the line on duty. I have learned that no arrest has been made as yet in the matter,” the journalist said.
Over 18 journalists have been assaulted in the state over the last two-and-a-half years and the incidents drew severe criticism from organisations working to uphold the rights of media people.
Two journalists were killed on duty in 2017 and the case was eventually handed over to the CBI.
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