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Murder of acclaimed and fearless journalist Gauri Lankesh, condemned by all

File Picture Courtesy : India Today
File Picture Courtesy : India Today

Noted journalist Gauri Lankesh was shot dead in her home in Rajarajeshwarinagar area in Bengaluru on Tuesday night. Unidentified men fired at least four shots at her before escaping by motorbike, Karnataka Home Minister Ramalinga Reddy told journalists.

Lankesh, an outspoken critic of Hindutva groups, edited and published a Kannda newspaper called Gauri Lankesh Patrike. She also wrote widely in the English press.

Reddy said that she had parked her car outside her home at 8.20 pm. He said that there were two CCTV cameras in Lankesh’s home that may hold clues to the incident.

The dastardly murder saw political reactions as well. Congress president Sonia Gandhi also condemned Gauri Lankesh’s murder and said it was a chilling reminder that “intolerance and bigotry is raising its ugly head in our society”. The Congress president described Lankesh as one with fearless and independent views, who had extraordinary grit and determination to take on the system.

“The series of killings of rationalists, free thinkers and journalists in the country has created an atmosphere that dissent, ideological differences and divergence of views can endanger our lives. This cannot be and should not be tolerated,” Sonia said in a statement. “It is an extremely sad moment for our democracy and a chilling reminder of the fact that intolerance and bigotry is raising its ugly head in our society,” PTI quoted the Congress president as saying.

Reacting to the murder of Gauri Lankesh, Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday alleged that anyone who opposed the BJP-RSS ideology was being attacked. “Anybody who speaks against ideology of BJP-RSS is pressured, beaten, attacked and even killed,” he said.

Lankesh, 55, was a staunch critic of the right-wing ideology. She was gunned down outside her house on Tuesday in a manner similar to other activists – M M Kalburgi, Govind Pansare and Narendra Dabholkar. The slain journalist’s death has sparked outrage and protests have taken place various parts of the country.

“PM is a skilled Hindutva politician,” Rahul said adding, “Unke shabdo mein do meanings hote hain. Unke base ke liye ek hota hai, baaki duniya ke liye alag (There are two meanings to whatever he says. One, is for his follower base and the second is for others.)”

Rahul said he spoke to Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and asked him to ensure that the guilty must be caught and punished. Siddaramaiah on Wednesday said the murder case would be investigated by a special team. “It is true that it is an organised crime, let the police look into it,” he was quoted as saying by ANI.

Former Mos HRD and External Affairs, Shashi Tharoor, Congress MP,  in his tweets expressed his shock and dismay over the killing

Senior journalists Rajdeep Sardesai and Sagarika Ghose took to Twitter to express their deep anguish over the killing.

 

 

“The bone-chilling murder of journalist Gauri Lankesh is a grim reminder of India’s reality where if you disagree, you will be brutally attacked,” said Congress media cell chief Randeep Surjewala. “Gauri Lankesh’s murder indicates that those living in castles will not tolerate dissent,” he said.

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