The Editors Guild of India (EGI) on Friday urged the Union Home Ministry to take immediate cognizance of police excesses against a journalist from Nilagiri area in Balasore district who was recently found chained to a hospital bed during treatment following arrest in a case.
EGI, country's top non-profit organization of journalists has requested the MHA to issue stern directions to all levels of law enforcement agencies to respect democratic values and freedom of press.
The journalist body has also demanded strict action against those who misuse state power.
The inhumane manner in which journalists, stringers, and district reporters are often treated by the police, in an effort to suppress any independent reporting is a matter of grave concern, the Guild stated in a statement.
Sharp reactions and condemnations from different quarters including the media fraternity across the State started to pour in after a photo of the journalist with his leg tied to a hospital bed during treatment were widely circulated.
Bowing to tremendous pressure from different sections, the police department on Friday came to a damage control mood and transferred the IIC of Nilagiri police station Droupadi Das and investigation officer Subarna Behera to district headquarters.
Notably, the Nilagiri based journalist, accused of assaulting a home guard, was arrested by the police recently. He was admitted to hospital in Balasore on Wednesday after suffering deterioration in health condition.
On the other hand, the Editors Guild of India also raised the incident of how the police of Sidhi district in Madhya Pradesh arrested, stripped, and humiliated a local journalist as well as some members of the civil society, on April 2, 2022, in retaliation against protest and associated news coverage of arrest of another member of civil society.