Hyderabad: The News Broadcasters Federation (NBF), the industry association representing the combined interests of TV news channels, has expressed its concern over the increasing incidents of attacks on media and journalists, in the backdrop of recent attack on TV5 News Channel.
The statement issued by NBF stated that in the last few weeks, there have been an increasing number of physical attacks and filing of police cases against TV News channels, and prominent journalists across the country, creating an obstacle against performing their public service, despite the hardships during the lockdown of the country since March 24, 2020.
The latest incident involves attack by unidentified men on the Hyderabad office of TV5, by damaging equipment and property.
“The attack on TV5 is yet another attempt at using physical violence and threats to try and muzzle the media. NBF strongly condemns this and expects the state government to ensure TV5 is able to continue broadcasting in an environment free of such strongarm tactics which are anyway bound to fail,” said Arnab Goswami, President, News Broadcasters Federation.
TV5 has been in the forefront of reporting the high costs of procurement of Rapid Test Kits (RTE) for testing COVID19 infection, by the State Government of Andhra Pradesh, which forced the officials to cancel the contract and save crore of rupees to the public ex-chequer. More recently, TV5 had been highlighting and raising questions on the negligence that led to the gas leakage at a private chemical factory in Vijayawada.
Across India, broadcasters in all languages are doing non-stop programming with almost 100 % focus on battling the Coronavirus and ensuring the success of the nationwide lockdown.
“Since the nationwide lockdown, there are at least 24 journalists booked under serious charges by the police department in various states. Some journalists have also been physically attacked. Such incidents are highly condemnable and demoralising for the journalists and the news broadcasting media,” said R. Jai Krishna, Secretary-General, News Broadcasters Federation.