Journalist, shot in front of daughters, dies; family demands answers
In a terrible piece of news that shows law and order has gone for a toss in Uttar Pradesh, the journalist, who was shot at by criminals in Ghaziabad on Monday evening, died, doctors confirmed on Wednesday. He was attacked in the Vijay Nagar area when he was returning home with his daughters. The ambush was linked to a molestation complaint he had filed.
The family's ordeal started on July 16 when Joshi's niece, 17, was harassed by local goons Ravi, Bhangika Abhishek, and Chhotu, son of one Kamal-ud-din. Joshi's nephew was with his sister when the incident happened. Later, Joshi confronted Ravi over the harassment and a fight ensued between them. Thereafter, the journalist, who worked for a local newspaper, filed a complaint against his niece's harassment.
On July 20 (Monday), Ravi and Chhotu gathered seven of their aides to attack Joshi. They accosted him, forced him to get off his bike, and took him towards a car. Meanwhile, his elder daughter led the younger one to a safe spot, shocking visuals from the attack showed. One of the criminals shot at Joshi, terrifying his daughters, who screamed for help.
Joshi was rushed to Yashodha Hospital immediately and his condition was said to be critical. Reports said doctors removed a bullet from his skull but he slipped into a coma and died soon after. The bereaved family blamed the police for not acting against the miscreants despite a written complaint. The station-in-charge has been suspended, and a departmental inquiry initiated over police's laxity.
Joshi's nephew Ashish told ANI that Chhotu is the main accused in the case and that he shot at his uncle. Ashish, who broke down occasionally while speaking to the agency, claimed his uncle was also hit with a rod by Chhotu. Accusing police of not doing anything, he said of the nine people arrested, three were picked up unnecessarily.
Ashish also said the family will not accept the body till the main accused is "brought here." Joshi's sister told ANI that police "planned the murder." "The chowki-in-charge is responsible. I don't know the name of the chowki-in-charge. We demand on the spot decision," she added.
Joshi's death sparked reactions in the political universe as well, with West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee tweeting, "An atmosphere of fear has been created in the country. Voices being muzzled. Media not spared. Shocking." And Congress' Jaiveer Shergill tweeted, "Nothing is in order in UP's law & order situation which seems to have become a toy in the hands of criminals. (sic)"
गाजियाबाद NCR में है। यहां कानून व्यवस्था का ये आलम है तो आप पूरे यूपी में कानून व्यवस्था के हाल का अंदाजा लगा लीजिए।— Priyanka Gandhi Vadra (@priyankagandhi) July 21, 2020
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