Jignesh Mevani, the Congress-backed independent MLA from Vadgam tried to imitate former National Students Union of India (NSUI) leader Shehla Rashid today (16 January), when he tried to single out and expel a Republic TV reporter from his press conference in Chennai. However, like Rashid, things didn’t go well for Mewani either, who was subsequently asked to leave by the Chennai media.
Mevani, who was in Chennai to interact with activists and students at the Qaid-E-millat International Academy of Media Studies, had to finally leave the venue without conducting the press conference.
Coming in the wake of heckling of another Republic TV reporter covering Mevani’s Yuva Hunkar rally in Delhi earlier, Mevani’s behaviour was condemned by the media fraternity.
Dear Chennai media, thanks for standing united against Jignesh Mevani. High time that activists and politicians stop dictating terms at press conferences, selectively humiliating field reporters for the supposed sins of their masters. @Ahmedshabbir20 @dhanyarajendran https://t.co/vzxlC9Vdt0— Chandra R. Srikanth (@chandrarsrikant) January 16, 2018
Reporters from several media houses especially Republic TV and Times Now, are routinely harassed by opposition leaders and their supporters, even as they proclaim their own Freedom of Speech and claim that it is being curtailed by the government.
That the media fraternity is waking up to this actual intolerance from the supposed ‘liberals’ is a welcome step.