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Scribe beaten to death in India, three arrested, PEC demands stringentpunishment

Press Emblem Campaign (PEC), the global media safety and
rights body, demanded stringent punishments to perpetrators of the
murder of a young scribe in central India’s State of Uttar Pradesh
some days back. Condoling the demise of Sudhir Saini (30), the PEC
also urges the UP government in Lucknow to adequately compensate the
reporter’s impoverished family.
It may be mentioned that Sudhir, who worked for a local newspaper
titled Shah Times, was physically attacked by three individuals while
travelling by a car in Saharanpur locality on 26 January 2022. They
had a quarrel with Sudhir, who was on a two-wheeler, following an
issue of overtaking the vehicle. The car passengers not only stopped
the reporter, but also thrashed him and finally threw to a water
Seriously wounded Sudhir was taken to a nearby hospital by the locals,
where he succumbed to injuries. The eye-witnesses provided vital
inputs to the police about the vehicle and those passengers. The
police team accordingly arrested Jahangir, Farman and Mannan accusing
them of murdering the reporter, who was only son to the elderly
“It’s so unfortunate that the life of a promising scribe had ended in
such a way. India continues to be a dangerous country for working
journalists as the populous nation lost six journalists to assailants
last year,” said Blaise Lempen, secretary-general of PEC adding that
year 2021 witnessed murders of 79 media workers in 29 countries, where
Afghanistan emerged as the most dangerous country with 12
journo-casualties, followed by Mexico (10) and Pakistan (7).
Days back, another young scribe named Rohit Kumar Biswal died in a
landmine blast, informed Nava Thakuria, PEC’s India representative.
Biswal (40), who used to work for an Oriya daily titled Dharitri,
stepped on the mine planted by left-wing rebels in Odisha’s Kalahandi
locality and died on the spot. The incident took place on 5 February
as the reporter went to cover a local election related developments
where the ultra-left extremists threatened people to boycott the
forthcoming polls.

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