Editors Guild of India calls for court-monitored probe into Agra-based scribe's arrest

Gaurav Bansal (39) was arrested on March 15 for reporting about alleged electoral malpractices in the recent-held Uttar Pradesh assembly elections

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PTI

The Editors Guild of India on Monday called for an independent court-monitored probe into the arrest of an Agra-based journalist.

Gaurav Bansal (39) was arrested on March 15 for reporting about alleged electoral malpractices in the recent-held Uttar Pradesh assembly elections.

"The Editors Guild of India is shocked by the manner in which an Agra-based journalist, Gaurav Bansal, was arrested and allegedly tortured for reporting about electoral malpractices in the recent assembly elections," the body said in a statement.

Noting that Bansal's lawyer has alleged that "he was given third degree torture and humiliated by police officers", the guild said that the scribe should be immediately released and there should be an independent court-monitored inquiry.

Police has charged Bansal under penal laws for obstructing a government officer from discharging his duty, the guild noted.

The guild said it is deeply concerned that penal laws are ever so often used as tools to harass and intimidate journalists from freely reporting on sensitive issues.


"This guild demands that Gaurav Bansal be treated fairly by the state administration and that he be released immediately. Further, an independent court-monitored inquiry be done to investigate into the charges of torture by police," it said.

The Editors Guild of India also urges the state government to ensure that the rights of the media are protected and journalists are not harassed from doing their job fearlessly, the guild said.

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