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Published On: Wed, Feb 26th, 2020

“Prove You’re Hindu”: Reporters Attacked By Mob In Delhi Violence

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Saurabh-Shukla---750NEW DELHI : In the three days through which the violence in Delhi’s north east have escalated into what is now being understood as communally targeted attacks on anti-Citizenship Amendment Act protesters, journalists have been among those injured – some quite seriously.The death toll in the violence in northeast Delhi has climbed to 20  according to GTB hospital authorities.
Three of NDTV’s reporters – and one cameraperson – were assaulted today by armed mobs in northeast Delhi. There were no cops present to prevent the attacks on crews who were doing their jobs.
Arvind Gunasekar was circled by a mob that hit him on the face; a lathi was about to be brought down on his head when his colleague, Saurabh Shukla, intervened.
A journalist with JK 24X7 news received a bullet injury and two reporters from NDTV were beaten and punched by rioters in northeast Delhi, which was wracked by fresh violence on Tuesday.

Akash sustained a bullet injury while covering the communal clashes in Maujpur locality and is in hospital where his condition is serious, said a tweet from JK 24X7 channel. NDTV said its journalist Arvind Gunasekar was hit by rioters while he was at one of the spots in northeast Delhi and lost a tooth. His fellow reporter, Saurabh, who tried to shield him, was punched, it said.
Many other journalists took to social media to share tales of how they were heckled and some alleged they were questioned about their religious identity. On Monday, too, reporters had a tough time covering the violence with many of them threatened and heckled.

Reporter Arvind Gunasekar lost three teeth in a barrage of blows and was reportedly about to be hit by a stick when cameraperson Saurabh Shukla intervened and ended up taking the blow instead. Gunasekar and Shukla had spent the day covering parts of north east Delhi that have been seeing the most violence, reporting from within vehicles at times when the clashes escalated.

Reporter Mariyam Alavi and cameraperson Sushil Rathee too were injured after having been attacked by a mob in a different part of north east Delhi. Tuesday’s edition of Times of India carried a firsthand account by photojournalist Anindya Chattopadhyay, who was asked to prove by raging mobs if he was a Hindu at Maujpur. reported that its correspondents “saw supporters of the law threatening journalists and checking their phones for videos and deleting them.” Meanwhile, messages have also poured in from reporters on the field and their colleagues off it, on the necessity of staying safe.
This is a riot! Protesters from both sides heckling & thrashing media persons. I was told “Camera band karle warna gaad denge yahin pe”. All this while 10 men were holding me tightly from my waist & shoulders. Have never felt so scared! Camera person was pushed badly with lathis
“We have little doubt the attackers actively sought to prevent videography or photography that may lead to them being identified. A lethargic police and politicians instigating communal violence cannot escape blame for attacks on the media,” the organisations wrote in a strongly worded statement.


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