In a shocking incident, a reputed Journalist and a dedicated social worker from Ganderbal was manhandled by a group of traders involved in norms violations when a market checking was taking place in Beehama Chowk here yesterday.
Sources said, a journalist who was performing his duty of covering the news of market checking was beaten ruthlessly by erring traders as to hide their guilt. The incident took place when an enforcement team comprising officials of CAPD, Revenue, Municipality and other concerned departments, headed by Naib Tehsildar Ganderbal, Mr. Mohammad Maqbool went for checking the available stocks and their prices along with their manufacturing and expiry in the market. The journalist accompanied the enforcement team and was covering the activity. Meanwhile, when this team reached Beehama Chowk, the two fruit vendors who were challaned for selling fruits on higher rates and for not displaying the Government approved price list jumped on the journalist and abused him for covering the news.
While this hot argument was on, three accused traders Ghulam Hassan Parra, Fayaz Ahmad (Allies Beta Sheikh) and Showkat Sofi showered their anger over the journalist. They abused, slapped and thrashed him in huge public gathering at Beehama Chowk in presence of the enforcement team to stop him from covering the news. The accused trio kept on beating the journalist before he was rescued to a safer place by two cops escorting the checking team.
Ultimately, the journalist left the place and submitted a written complaint against the accused. Police Ganderbal assured him that his case would be taken on priority. The journalist then was called to police station in the evening, where the trio along with some 30 odd traders abused him again and tried to put the false allegations on him as to get free from the case.
Prime accused claiming himself to be the president of trade shouted on the journalist that he has no right to ask any shopkeeper about the prices thus attempted to save himself and his associates from being lodged in an FIR.
Sources said that journo’s written complaint is still in the state of only as an application and no FIR was lodged till the last reports came in.
Police official from PS Ganderbal said the complaint doesn’t get an FIR, However a police report can be dropped and submitted to the court, which is not understandable. The law says that this violation and physical assault deserves FIR under section 323, 341 RPC and more but for police station Ganderbal, it’s perhaps not valid.
Various media, social and political organisations have condemned the act and appealed district police administration to arrest the culprits.