New Delhi, Feb 10: The Editors Guild of India strongly condemned the attack on senior journalist Nikhil Wagle in the city of Pune on Friday.
Reports state that the car in which the veteran journalist was travelling to attend an event was attacked by some persons, allegedly members of a political party who were reportedly angered by an opinion that Wagle had expressed on a social media platform.
“Wagle's views are his views. But to attack him for voicing his opinion is unjust, illegal, and deplorable,” a statement said.
The Editors Guild called on the administration in Pune and the Maharashtra government to book the guilty. “They must also ensure the safety of Wagle and protect his right to express his views as enshrined in our Constitution.”
“Further, the Guild is concerned that FIRs have been registered against Wagle under sections 153A (promoting enmity between different groups), 500 (defamation) and 505 (statements conducing to public mischief) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) at the Vishrambaug police station.”
The Guild reiterated its deep concerns on the misuse of criminal laws against journalists in an effort to intimidate and harass them. “We urge law enforcement agencies to exercise restraint before registering complaints against journalists as an FIR, lest the process of investigation becomes a punishment itself.”