A few journalists covering the installation of a B.R. Ambedkar statue at the Madras High Court Sunday were beaten up by some lawyers when they began filming the clash between two groups of advocates.
The fracas started when a section of lawyers waved black flags and shouted slogans against Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi, demanding action against police officials responsible for last year’s clash in the high court premises.
Another group of lawyers objected to that, resulting in clashes between the two groups. Crews of private news channels present at the spot started filming the clash, inviting attacks from the clashing lawyers.
The Madras Union of Journalists (MUJ) Sunday condemned the attack on reporters.
The union said it was shocking that journalists who were discharging their professional duty were physically attacked for filming scenes of violence during a clash between two groups of advocates.
“It is most unfortunate that the attack on mediapersons took place at a venue where Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi, Chief Justice of India K.G. Balakrishnan and a host of senior judicial officers were present,” D. Suresh Kumar, MUJ’s general secretary, said.
“Even more shocking is the fact that policemen, who were present at the scene, did nothing to prevent the attack. They watched mutely as a group of persons snatched television cameras and smashed them on the ground. Besides, they chased and attacked journalists, resulting in injuries to them,” he said.
He demanded immediate arrest of those involved in the attack on mediapersons and compensation for the injured journalists and the expensive cameras which were damaged.