Threats to journalists is the result of government neglect

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Sudama Pal : Associate Editor

The fourth pillar of democracy seems to be under a lot of pressure today. Doing unbiased and independent journalism has become a risky job. If you want to write investigative news, you have to risk your life. Feeling neglected and tired has become a common thing for journalists today.

The journalist of our country does not turn away from his responsibilities. He is firmly standing on every front. Even despite the implementation of the code of conduct, journalists are being attacked. The latest example gives goosebumps. In Jaunpur, BJP worker and journalist Ashutosh Srivastava was shot dead in broad daylight. In Rae Bareli, a news channel journalist Raghav Trivedi was badly beaten up at the rally of Union Home Minister and BJP leader Amit Shah. In Ghaziabad, goons entered the office of a Hindi daily and attacked journalists Satyam Pancholi and Subhash Chandra. The women journalists present there saved their honour with great difficulty.

The suffering of the victimised journalists increases further when no arrests have been made even after a week or two of filing FIRs in all these cases. Even if the mastermind of Jaunpur’s Ashutosh Srivastava murder case was caught, he escaped from police custody. The remaining four accused are already out of police’s reach. Although the main accused who escaped from police custody was caught again from Maharashtra after two days, but this was a big negligence of the police.

The question arises that why does the government remain silent in the cases of journalists? This negligence of the government harms the journalists both directly and indirectly. While the police gets the support to act arbitrarily, the morale of the criminals increases. Many times, the nexus of police and criminals starts working against the journalists. There is a saying, ‘Thieves are cousins!’ Some policemen involved in crime and corruption sometimes make criminals their pawns to humiliate journalists. This tendency is very dangerous not only for healthy journalism but also for democracy.

During last few years, the threat of mob violence against journalists is also increasing. Even on the digital front, journalists are being forced to defend themselves. In such a situation, it is becoming difficult to save the existence of the fourth pillar of democracy by following the standards of journalism.

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