New York, October 8, 2015–The Committee to Protect Journalists today called on authorities in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh to thoroughly investigate the shooting death of journalist Hemant Yadav, determine a motive, and bring the perpetrators to justice. The attack follows the killing of another journalist in the state in June.
Yadav, 45, was a reporter for the Hindi-language news channel TV 24. He was shot near his home on Saturday night in Chandauli district in Uttar Pradesh. His attackers fired at him from a motorcycle and then fled the scene, according to Agence France-Presse. No arrests have been made, AFP reported, citing police.
It is unclear if Yadav was killed in relation to his work as a journalist. CPJ was unable to determine what Yadav covered at the TV channel. TV 24 did not immediately reply to CPJ’s message requesting comment.
Police have not identified suspects or offered a clear explanation of a motive behind the attack, news reports said. He was shot while returning home from a local market, media reports said.
“We call on authorities to step up their investigation into the killing of Hemant Yadav. Police must act quickly and decisively to investigate this case and bring his killers to justice,” said Bob Dietz, CPJ’s Asia program coordinator. “Far too often, journalists’ murders go unpunished in India, no matter the motive. It is time for India to address this tradition of impunity.”
In June, freelance journalist Jagendra Singh, who reported critically on politics and current affairs in Hindi-language newspapers and on Facebook, died from burn injuries he sustained after a police raid at his home in Uttar Pradesh on June 1.
Of the 11 journalist murders CPJ has confirmed as work-related in the last 10 years in India, all have been carried out with complete impunity. India ranks 14th on CPJ’s 2015 Impunity Index, which spotlights countries where journalists are slain and the killers go free.