Photojournalists association protests against Tata Sons for its failure to suspend the contract of TOPS security guards.
The Mumbai Press Club, Bombay News Photographers Association, Mumbai Marathi Patrakar Sangh, TV Journalists Association and Brihan Mumbai Union of Journalists held a protest march from Hutatma Chowk to Bombay house after Tata Sons failed to revoke the contract of TOPS security guards. They condemned the attack on photojournalists by Tata security staff and urged the state government to pass a law to ensure safety of photographers and journalists. They also want the government to set up fast track courts to hear cases pertaining to assault on photojournalists.
“This is not the first instance when photojournalists have been assaulted. Earlier too many of them were targeted while performing their duties. We had worn black band and carried banners to protest against the attacks. The government should pass a law to ensure security for photographers and journalists. However, it is yet to see the light of the day,” said Dharmendra Jore, Secretary Mumbai Press Club.
“We had urged Tata Sons to terminate the licence of TOPS Guard security but they turned a blind eye towards it. Hence we organised a silent protest in support of photojournalists who were assaulted by the security men of Tata sons,” said BNPA president Rajanish Kakade.
“The job of a photographer and journalist is not easy as they have to face several risks while covering news. Many times they are assaulted while discharging their duties. Officials must understand that photographers are only doing their job and should not attack them. We will hold more protests in coming days if our demands are not met,” said a photographer on the condition of anonymity.
Meanwhile police have arrested two more persons in connection with the assault on photojournalists. Two more security persons were apprehended after they were identified by the photojournalists, injured in the assault, a senior police official said.
The two who were apprehended have been identified as Swapnil Chasksr and Pravin Ramesh Salunkhe, he said.
With their arrest, police have now apprehended all the seven accused named in the FIR, the official said.
Three security personnel Shankar Ayyar, Ashok Bamne and Manvir Prajapati were arrested on Monday.
Police had earlier arrested Ganesh Shinde and Mayuresh Gurav in connection with the case.
Three photojournalists from leading newspapers were allegedly beaten by the guards on Friday following a scuffle when ousted Tata Sons Chairman Cyrus Mistry had arrived to chair the board meeting of Indian Hotels, that runs the group’s Taj brand of hotels, to approve the second quarter earnings.