India: media worker assaulted for covering corruption caseEvent
- Initial Date
- Apr 4, 2022
- Event Description
Reporter Loknath Dalei was allegedly assaulted and mistreated by police officers from Nilagiri police station on April 6, for his prior reporting on the district’s alleged corruption. The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) is deeply concerned by the journalist’s assault and urges the authorities to expedite their investigation into the incident and bring the perpetrators to justice.
According to India Times, Loknath Dalei, a reporter for Kanak TV in Balasore, attended Nilagiri police station regarding about a minor motorcycle accident on April 4. At the station, the journalist was confronted by the Inspector, Droupadi Das, who proceeded to assault him.
"The police made me sit for five hours. When I tried to get in touch with my friends, the local police officer thrashed me and I fell down. I almost fainted. Later on Wednesday evening, I was admitted to the Balasore district hospital," Dalei said in a statement to The Telegraph.
Dalei fell unconscious after the attack and was sent to the Balasore District Hospital that evening, where he was chained by police officers and left without a bed.
“Nearly seven guards carrying guns are guarding me [to the hospital]. On Thursday morning, two constables came and put iron shackles on my leg as if I would flee from the hospital”, Dalei said.
The journalist claims he was targeted for previous reports he had published on the police district’s alleged corruption.
Photos and videos of Dalei’s condition went viral on social media, with India’s Minister of Education and Skill Development, Dharmendra Pradhan, condemning the actions of the police officers.
Following public outcry, the Balasore Superintendent of Police, Shri Sudhansu Sekhar Mishra, informed reporters that an investigation into the incident would be undertaken, and that “strict action will be taken against those found guilty”.
- Impact of Event
- Gender of HRD
- Intimidation and Threats
- Restrictions on Movement
- Violence (physical)
- Rights Concerned
- Freedom of movement
- Freedom of expression
- Right to healthy and safe environment
- Media Worker
- Monitoring Status
- Event Location
- Event Location
- Summary for Publications
On 4 April 2022, Loknath Dalei, media worker, was interrogated and assaulted by the police for reporting on a local corruption case, and then chained and surveillance when at the hospital in Nilagiri District, Odisha, India.