Journalist murdered

New York, September 22, 2003—Parmanand Goyal, a journalist with the daily Punjab Kesari, was shot and killed by three unidentified assailants at his home on September 18 in Kaithal, Haryana, north of the capital, Delhi, according to local press reports. The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) is investigating the motives behind his murder.

According India’s The Tribune newspaper, Goyal’s son Naveen Rinku answered the door at Goyal’s home, where three men asked to speak with his father. Rinku told Goyal about the visitors and asked the men to wait in the backyard. The Tribune reports that Rinku claims to have overheard the men threatening his father to stop writing about a local political figure and the police. Soon after, Goyal was found wounded in the backyard, and his assailants fled the scene. Goyal was rushed to the hospital but was pronounced dead on arrival, according to press reports.

Goyal had been arrested on corruption charges in May and was released on bail earlier this month. His family says that the charges against him were false.

Goyal was the district president of the Haryana Union of Journalists. Local journalists, outraged by the murder, gathered on September 19 for a moment of silence in his memory and to call for an investigation into his murder.