Katju condemns police action, calls it a 'flagrant attack on democracy'

Last Updated: Mon, Dec 24, 2012 09:11 hrs

The chairman of Press Council of India (PCI), Justice (retired) Markandey Katju, has condemned the police action on journalists covering the events during the protests at the India Gate here, and sought action against the men in uniform.

"The journalists were only covering the events, which is their fundamental right under the Constitution and in fact that is their duty to the public," he said in a statement today.

Justice Katju asked the Central Government and the respective state governments to severely punish the police personnel involved in attacks on journalists. He also demanded that all medical aid be provided to the injured journalists immediately.

Meanwhile, Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde has called a meeting with the State Director Generals of Police (DGPs) and Chief Secretaries on January 4 to discuss the women security situation across the country.

Shinde will be holding a daylong discussion with the state officials to know about the current security situation and is likely to take up steps to improve it wherever required.

The media personnel, who were covering the protests against the brutal gang-rape of a 23-year-old girl, faced the brunt of police action on Sunday with the cops spraying water cannons on scribes and their equipments.

The men in uniform also beat some of the journalists, including a female reporter of a leading English news channel, covering the protests at India Gate.

Meanwhile, the protestors have gathered at the Jantar Mantar here after the lockdown at India Gate.

Prohibitory orders that were imposed under Section 144 yesterday remains. The media personnel have been asked to vacate the India Gate here, where the situation had become tensed last evening with the police using water cannons to disperse the angry protestors.

The protestors broke barricades, started pelting stones and virtually attacked the police.

The police had no other option, but to resort to teargas shells.

All the nine metro stations in the vicinity of India Gate have also been closed until further orders to ensure crowds of people do not attempt to reach the protesting venue.

The condition of the 23-year-old girl, who is being treated at the Safdarjung Hospital here, continues to be critical. (ANI)

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