UP Journo Shot Dead in Ballia; Kin Say Police Filed False Report
The journalist, identified as Ratan Singh, was working for the Sahara Samay television news channel.
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A journalist was shot dead by unknown people in Uttar Pradesh's Ballia district on Monday, 24 August. The journalist, identified as Ratan Singh, was working for the Sahara Samay television news channel.
While the police’s primary investigation indicates the killing to be over a land dispute, the victim’s father has refuted the police’s claims and accused some officials of filing a false report in the matter.
According to reports, the journalist was first beaten up and then shot dead. He was chased into a house by the assailants and died on the spot after being shot.
WHAT THE POLICE SAYS
The UP Police said that Singh’s killing is not related to his journalistic work but is a result of land dispute.
“Although the deceased was a journalist the incident does not involve anything related to journalism. It is completely about land dispute between the two parties,” Subhash Chandra Dubey, DIG Azamgarh told ANI.
“We are trying to find why the victim went to the pradhan’s house. It is suspected that the victim was beaten up before being shot. Village Pradhan Seema Singh’s husband, Jhabhar Singh, is currently absconding,” Circle Officer (Fefna) Chandrakesh Singh, told The Indian Express on Monday.
THE LAND DISPUTE CLAIMS
According to NDTV, Singh had gone to his village over the land dispute matter when he was chased and shot dead. He was reportedly trying to escape the attackers when he was shot.
"The accused had built a wall around the property. The accused had also placed a haystack on the land to stake claim, which was removed by the journalist. A fight broke out over the matter and the journalist was attacked. He died on the spot. Police have arrested three accused. Property dispute and old enmity are believed to be the reasons behind the attack," Subhash Dubey, Deputy Inspector General, Azamgarh Range, was quoted by NDTV as saying.
FAMILY REFUTES ‘LAND DISPUTE’ ANGLE
Victim’s father Vinod Singh refuted the police’s claim of land dispute being the reason behind the killing and accused the cops of filing a false report.
“There was no dispute at all. A false report has been given to higher-ups in Ballia police by Sasmoli police incharge. My son was called on a false pretext. The spot where murder took place is barely 20 steps away from police station,” Vinod Singh was quoted by ANI as saying.
UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has announced an ex gratia of Rs 10 lakh to the family of the deceased journalist.
CASE AND ARRESTS
Additional SP, Ballia, said that a case has been registered against 10 people, of which six have been arrested.
“A case has been registered against 10 accused out of which six people have been arrested so far. Further investigation underway,” he told ANI. One police personnel has also been suspended in connection with the case.
MAYAWATI & PRIYANKA GANDHI QUESTION SAFETY OF JOURNALISTS IN UP
Commenting on the killing, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) supremo and former UP chief minister Mayawati on Tuesday said that the fourth pillar of democracy is under attack in the state.
“In the state of Uttar Pradesh, crime rate is increasing every day. Now, the situation has arrived when the fourth pillar of democracy, our media personnel, are being targeted. It shows that the law and order situation in the state is miserable,” she said, as quoted by ANI.
Highlighting the murders of three journalists in the state since 19 June, Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra said that the “UP government's attitude towards the safety and freedom of journalists is reprehensible.”
She also slammed UP Chief Minister Adityanath, by saying that the speed of crime in the state is twice the speed of governance.
UP GOVT TAKING MATTER SERIOUSLY: MINISTER
UP minister Anand Swarup Shukla visited the district hospital after Singh’s death.
“A journalist has been brutally murdered and we are taking this issue seriously. Will request CM Yogi to increase compensation and give a job to his wife,” he said.
JOURNALISTS & LOCALS PROTEST
According to ANI UP, journalists and locals are protesting the murder of the journalist.
Also, while on his way to pay a visit to the family of the deceased, Uttar Pradesh Congress Committee (UPCC) president Ajay Kumar Lallu was detained by the police in Raebareli on Tuesday.
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