Lawyers assault journalists covering trial

July 27, 2016 4:54 PM ET

On July 20, 2016, a group of lawyers chased and beat journalists gathered at a court complex in the southern Indian state of Kerala, injuring three people, according to The Indian Express and other Indian newspapers.

The journalists were covering the trial of a government official accused of molesting a woman, The New Indian Express reported. The official denied the allegation, according to reports, and lawyers blamed the media for publishing reports they deemed unfair.

The English-language Deccan Chronicle identified the injured journalists as: Rakesh Thakazhi, a cameraman for Malayalam-language Asianet News; Salam P. Hydrose, a senior reporter at Asianet News; and Monish (identified by only one name), a cameraman for Malayalam-language MediaOne TV.

Several female journalists at the scene fled to another office in the court complex, where they remained until they were provided police protection, according to the report.

As news of the attack spread, other journalists and media workers arrived at the scene and staged a sit-in. Lawyers threw stones and coins at the protesting journalists, calling them beggars who could be influenced by money, journalists told The Indian Express and The New Indian Express.

Journalists filed a complaint against the lawyers who prevented them from covering the court proceedings with acting Chief Justice Thottathil B. Radhakrishnan, according to news reports.

Authorities on July 21, 2016, announced a judicial inquiry into the attack, The Times of India reported.

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