Journalist Watchdog Calls for Probe Into Death of Scribe in Uttar Pradesh

WASHINGTON: A US-based journalists watchdog has called for an investigation into the death of a freelance journalist who died of burn injuries at a hospital in Uttar Pradesh this week.

“We call on authorities to conduct a swift, credible, and transparent investigation into the death of Jagendra Singh,” said Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) Asia Program Research Associate Sumit Galhotra.

Before his death, Jagendra Singh had accused Uttar Pradesh minister Ram Murti Verma of “unleashing” a reign of terror on him and his family for his investigative reports and comments against Verma.

“Given the allegations of police participation, and India’s poor track record of solving crimes in connection with reporting on local corruption, the involvement of an independent authority is essential,” he said.

The journalist had alleged that he sustained burn injuries during raid by Inspector Sri Prakash Rai at his house. During a raid at the journalist’s house at Awas Vikas Colony in Sadar Bazar, Shahjahanpur on June 1, his family alleged that police officials set him on fire after which he was admitted to a hospital in Lucknow.

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