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NAJ, DUJ Demand Cease in Manipur Violence, Safety of Journalists

In a joint statement, National Alliance of Journalists and the Delhi Union of Journalists condemned attacks on journalists covering the violence.

New Delhi: Calling for an end to the ongoing violence in the Northeastern state of Manipur by “armed groups on all sides”, the National Alliance of Journalists (NAJ) and Delhi Union of Journalists (DUJ).

Expressing shock at the attack on two journalists, Akshay Dongre of Aaj Tak and Shalini of HY News, who were physically assaulted by an alleged Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) worker Sanatomba Meetei on the June 21, the NAJ and DUJ, in a joint statement, demanded that the authorities ensure the safety of all journalists covering the violence

 We welcome the immediate reaction of Manipur journalists’ unions who approached Chief Minister Biren Singh and had the man arrested,” said the statement, released here on Thursday.

Calling for immediate cessation of violence by “armed groups belonging to all sides,” the joint press statement noted that there had been several attacks on media in Manipur in the past month.

On June 16, two journalists Jiten and Khagemba were assaulted by the Rapid Action Force outside the Singhjami Police Station. On May 23, three journalists, Soram Inaoba, Nongthombom Johnson of Mami TV, and Brahmacharimayum Dayananda of ANI, were hit with batons by security personnel while recording footage of a burning building and a drone flying overhead at New Checkon in Imphal. Afrida Hussain of India Today’s NE Bureau was also targeted by a mob outside her hotel in Imphal on May 29 and received threatening calls for her reportage. She was evacuated from the hotel by Assam Rifles personnel, the statement read.

Both the organisations urged the state and Central governments to act fast to bring peace to troubled Manipur so that all citizens’ lives are safe.

 The ongoing ethnic clashes in Manipur began in May, mainly between armed forces and armed groups belonging to the majority Meitei and the tribal Kuki community, leading to over 130 deaths and about 60,000 displaced from their homes, as per reports.

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