I am outraged that attacks on journalists are on the rise. I call on all concerned to prevent and prosecute such violence. Defenders of a free press are safeguarding our rights and we must, in turn, ensure theirs.
-Ban Ki Moon,on World Press Freedom Day, May 3, 2012
The incident of shooting at a women journalist in Itanagar , the capital city of India’s North Eastern State of Arunachal Pradesh has recieved massive condemnation. People are out on streets, demanding justice for the scribe and large segment of Arunachal’s media fraternity has taken to the streets apparently, Arunachal Pradesh is also one of the most peaceful state in India.
Ms Tongam Rina the associate editor of Arunachal Times was shot outside her office on 15 th July 2012 evening around 5 pm as she was entering her office. The two bullets were fired from behind, and the culprit is not yet to be found. She was badly injured when she was taken to RKM hospital, Itanagar.
Payers and chants were recited in households across the state, prayers were answered as Rina narrowly escaped the tragedy of Death. She is now recovering after two immediate surgeries, she has become the living idol of the peoples frustrations toward the ill governed government of the state.
Now the government is in scanner of the people. The media houses in Arunachal Pradesh have been targeted many times. Some being forced to shut down some vandalized now and then.
The same office she worked has been targeted a months ago facing vandalism. In other incident, Eastern Sentinel daily, two journalists were targeted by miscreants before. The media fraternity has raised their voices many a times but has never heard and seen any support as it has now.
The protest and peace rallies had being organised all around the state which has caught a rapid fire and spread out to other places too. A peace rally for the same cause has also being organised in Shillong Meghalaya by the students. More than 150 Arunachlees and 30 non Arunachlee people joined it.
Which started from old NEFA building, Arunachal boys hostel Shillong and ended in Arunachal Bhavan in Clive colony. The press club of Shillong and various media houses joined the cause, and raised their voices in unison, for justice to Tongam Rina.
People shall continue to demand justice as long as the seed of democracy thrives in our hearts.
Karry Padu is a student of Journalism in Shillong. She is also an independent social activist.The Arachneed stands grateful to Karry Padu for this report and we stand in solidarity with Tongam Rina and her quest for justice.
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