Seeking Justice For Gauri Lankesh, Thousands Take To Streets in Bengaluru
- IWB Post
- September 13, 2017
The streets of Bengaluru came alive with slogans of ‘I am Gauri.” The protests took place in response to the cold-blooded murder of senior journalist Gauri Lankesh at her home. Thousands took to streets, marching from the Bengaluru Railway Station which ended at the Central College grounds.
According to reports, the protesters also released a special edition of tabloid Gauri Lankesh Patrike at the Central College ground. Writers, students, activists, concerned citizens were joined by activists from around the country, including Medha Patkar of the Narmada Bachao Andolan.
A special edition of Gauri Lankesh Patrike is released. “This is the writing they wanted to silence. Here, take a louder voice!” #IAmGauri
“Killing of individuals and mob lynching, both have really told us that whoever speaks out with strength, commitment and courage can’t be spared by them because they feel scared by us,” Ms. Patkar told. Reportedly, CPI-M General Secretary Sitaram Yechury, noted social activist Medha Patkar, journalists P. Sainath and Sagarika Ghose, Swaraj India leaders Prashant Bhushan and Yogendra Yadav, documentary producers Anand Patwardhan and Rakesh Sharma, and civil rights activists Teesta Setalvad, Kavitha Krishnan and Jignesh Mevani, besides film producer Praksah Rai participated in the event.
The protesters demanded the arrest of those who were behind the brutal murder of Lankesh as the police are trying to decipher evidence from the grainy CCTV footage found of the incident. “When I heard the news I was numb I didn’t know how to react, didn’t know how to say anything. This can happen to anybody else. So it is very important that we have to respond and express our feelings,” artist Balan Nambiar told.
Press freedom has forever been an oppressed field in India and journalists have faced the consequences of standing by their views. “I think it is the fact that there is a shrinking space for dissension right now in the country …We are protesting that we should have the right to speak out against something and not just blindly accept things. I think that is exactly what we’re here for today,” a young student protester said
Since the incident, many writers and journalists who could be the next targets were provided police protection.