Kolkata: Barely a few days after the assassination of Gauri Lankesh, the Banglore based editor of Lankesh Patrike, senior journalist and anchor of NDTV’s Prime Time show Ravish Kumar is getting death threats on his phone.
On Friday morning, Ravish Kumar wrote about receiving phone calls, where the callers threatened him with dire consequence, on his Facebook Page. For a journalist like him, who has made a mark as pro-people journalism, and rational writer, has been constantly abused by the trolls on social media. The rise of the army of trolls has increase moreover, in these four years. However, calls, cannot be ignored, especially after the assassination of Lankesh. She too had been getting such calls, till she was killed.
“I am consulting my well-wishers, and as they will suggest, I will be finally taking a call on whether, I should report the threat,”Ravish said, while speaking to eNewsroom.
Ravish Kumar is among the few journalists in India, who has been continuously reinventing his show, often highlighting the issues that still plagues India and if required is even critical of the government and its policies.
These days, he is also active on social media and even after getting abusive comments, he replies to several’s comments on his Facebook page.
After Gauri’s murder, death threats are being issued not just to journalists, but also to rationalists and activists, who are critics of right-wing ideology, on the social media. Samar Anarya, who is a coordinator in Asian Human Rights Commission, and a Jawarhar Lal Nehru University (JNU) pass out, is very active on social media and writes in both English and Hindi languages. He too has received a threat call.
Significantly, Samar, a native of Uttar Pradesh is based in Hong Kong. And he was threatened on his international number.
“My number is available in public domain, so anyone can get it. But getting a threat call on my Hong Kong number, highlights the extent to which these people can go. I know, these cowards, have a list ready. Earlier, too, I had got such threat calls,” Samar told eNewsroom.
Senior journalist P Sainath has also mentioned the same, in his recent article published in The Wire.
Sainath in his write up, has explained the modus operandi of Lankesh’s murder is the message to all those not following the diktat. Guari, an open critic of the saffron brigade, has been warned to not voice her thoughts, following which she was shot point blank, right in front of her house. Investigations, have now revealed, that the pistol used for killing her, was of the same kind used to silence rationalists MM Kulbargi, Narendra Dabholkar and Govind Pansare. In fact, a Mumbai High Court observation, had even mentioned that format in which these killings are carried out are very well planned.
“The forces behind the assassination of Guari have a list, and they want us to know that they will pursue it,” Sainath wrote in the article.
eNewsroom in its earlier story has mentioned that a report published by the New York –based Committee for Protection of Journalists (CPJ), Indian exposing corruption often pay with their lives. As per CPJ data, 28 Indian journalists (including Lankesh) have been murdered since 1992. And so far conviction has happened in only one case.
International newspaper Washington Post had its September 6 edition’s headline screaming – Who is next? Whatever be the answer to this question posed, but one thing is evident it is – where the world’s largest democracy is heading to by trying to gag its fourth pillar.