A group of journalists donned helmets as they went to interview BJP leaders in Raipur on Wednesday, 6 February, NDTV reported.
The journalists, who had their mics and cameras in their hand while sporting the helmets, were reportedly protesting against the thrashing inflicted upon a fellow journalist, Suman Pandey, who on 2 February, had been beaten by a group of BJP workers, while recording a meeting of the BJP's district-level leaders in Raipur, the report added.
Pandey had reportedly sustained head injuries in the incident. Hence, the journalists wearing the helmets, had made it a point to send a symbolic message to the BJP government - and also wished to safeguard themselves incase they were attacked as well.
Thrashed After I Refused to Delete Video on Them: Pandey
Speaking to PTI earlier, Suman Pandey, the Raipur-based journalist who was thrashed claimed that the BJP workers had jumped on him and started hitting him, after he refused to delete his footage on a scuffle between some of the same workers, that had just taken place.
“I was recording a video of the meeting on my mobile phone when suddenly BJP leaders started arguing among themselves over some issue. Rajeev Agarwal and another person, Utkarsh Trivedi, told me to delete the video of the scuffle, which I refused. They then started hitting me and forcefully deleted the video.”Suman Pandey to PTI
Following the incident, Pandey informed other journalists about the incident, who then alerted the police and began a protest for the arrest of the BJP workers who had assaulted him.
Four BJP functionaries, including the party's Raipur chief Rajeev Agarwal, had reportedly been arrested by the Raipur police, based on a complaint filed by Pandey, NDTV reported. Chhattisgarh BJP spokesperson Sacchidanand Upasane also told the news channel that the party had apologised to Pandey.
(With inputs from PTI and NDTV)