The South Asian Times

19 January 2018 20:25 PM

Tripura journalists in New Delhi, demand CBI probe into murder of journos

By IANS

Agartala/New Delhi, Dec 4: A nine-member delegation of Tripura journalists met Union Minister of State in the Prime Minister's Office Jitendra Singh on Monday to demand a CBI probe into the murder of two journalists from the state.

The team also plans to hold a demonstration in Delhi on Tuesday in front of the Indian Newspaper Society (INS) office, Forum for Protection of Journalists (FFPJ) Convener Pranab Sarkar told IANS over phone from Delhi.

The FFPJ delegation - led by veteran editor Subal Kumar Dey - would also try to meet President Ram Nath Kovind, Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra and Press Council of India Chairman Justice Chandramauli Kumar Prasad to press for their demand.

"After a series of agitations in Tripura we came to the national capital to press for our demand to protect the media persons in Tripura," Sarkar added.

A local newspaper journalist Sudip Dutta Bhowmik, 50, was shot dead inside the Tripura State Rifles (TSR) 2nd battalion headquarters at Ramchandra Nagar in West Tripura district on November 21.

Young television journalist Santanu Bhowmik, 28, was hacked to death while he was covering protests of a tribal based political party at Mandai, 25 km from Agartala, on September 20.

PCI chairman, who is likely to visit the state to study both the incidents, took suo-moto cognizance of the journalists murder cases.

To probe the sensational killings, the state government had earlier constituted two separate Special Investigation Teams (SIT) headed by Deputy Inspector General of Police Arindam Nath and Inspector General of Police (IGP) G.S. Rao.

The SIT, led by Nath, has so far arrested four TSR personnel, including TSR second battalion Commandant Tapan Debbarma, who is a senior Tripura Police Service (TPS) officer (1998 batch) and waiting for IPS nomination.

In the Bhowmik murder case too, the SIT led by IGP Rao also arrested four youths.

The Congress has demanded a high-level inquiry into the murder. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has demanded a CBI probe and resignation of Chief Minister Manik Sarkar, who also holds the Home portfolio.

Both parties observed a state-wide shutdown on November 23 to protest the killings.

The ruling Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) has criticised the BJP for politicising the journalist's killing.

"State government is on the right track in probing the unfortunate killings," CPI-M central committee member Gautam Das told the media.

Update: 04 Dec, 2017

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