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India: Journalist Vikram Joshi, shot in head by assailants in Ghaziabad

New Delhi: A journalist in Ghaziabad- city of Uttar Pradesh, who was shot in the head by unidentified assailants in front of his minor daughters, succumbed to injuries at a hospital on Wednesday morning. The deceased journalist has been identified as Vikram Joshi. He worked with a local daily.

Joshi had filed a complaint with the Vijay Nagar Police Station alleging harassment of his niece on Thursday, July 16  He was shot at around 10.30 pm on Monday near his home in Vijay Nagar area in Ghaziabad. “He passed away at around 4 am during treatment at the hospital,” a family member said.

Vikram Joshi was admitted to a private hospital after the attack. According to doctors treating Joshi, the veins in the journalists’ head had got badly damaged due to the bullet injury. Meanwhile, the Station in-charge has been suspended and a departmental inquiry has been initiated after the journalist’s family alleged inaction by the police. According to the police, nine people have been arrested in connection with the case so far.

According to reports, Vikram Joshi was on a bike when assailants attacked him and dragged him behind a car and then opened fire. Joshi was accompanied by his niece when the incident took place. He had allegedly lodged a complaint with the Vijay Nagar police over repeated harrassment of his neice.

“Some boys used to eve-tease my sister. It was her birthday when the incident occured. My uncle was coming home with her when they attacked him and shot him. We will not accept my uncle’s body till the accused caught,” the deceased scribe’s nephew said.

Ghaziabad police have released a list of 10 persons of which three are accused in the case and have been arrested. Six have been detained and one is absconding. Meanwhile, opposition leaders have criticised the Yogi Adityanath government over the deteriorating law and order situation in Uttar Pradesh. BSP chief and former CM Mayawati said ‘jungle raj’ has been established in Uttar Pradesh under the BJP rule.

“Murder cases are on rise and crime against women is also rising… jungle raj prevailing in UP. The law and order situation has deteriorated in the state. The ‘crime virus’ is more dominant than coronavirus in UP. People are living in a state of fear. The government should take this into consideration,” she tweeted.

Former Congress president Rahul Gandhi also criticised the Yogi government. “Journalist Vikram Joshi was killed for the opposing molestation of his niece. My condolences to the bereaved family. They had promised Ram Raj, but delivered Gunda Raj,” Rahul tweeted in Hindi.

Trinamool Congress president and West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee said an atmosphere of fear has been created in the country. “My heartfelt condolences to the family of Vikram Joshi, a fearless journalist who passed away today. He was shot in UP for filing an FIR to book his niece’s molesters. An atmosphere of fear has been created in the country. Voices being muzzled. Media not spared. Shocking,” she tweeted.

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