Shoe hurling incident at bus carrying Kerala CM: Woman journalist arraigned


PTI, Dec 23, 2023, 8:11 AM IST

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan (Credit: PTI / File)

Kochi: Kerala police have arraigned a woman television journalist as the fifth accused in a recent incident of hurling shoes at a bus, in which Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan was travelling, by the activists of the Kerala Students’ Union.

KSU is the students’ wing of the opposition Congress.

A shoe was reportedly thrown at the special bus when the CM and his cabinet colleagues were travelling through the district as part of the Nava Kerala Sadas programme early this month.

Kurupumpady Police here, which probed the incident, already registered a case against four identified KSU workers in the incident. Now, Vineetha V G, reporter of Malayalam news channel Twenty Four, was also arraigned as accused in the case, police said.

Confirming the development, a senior police officer said a case in this regard was registered on December 10 and the journalist was arraigned later after “understanding that she also had her own role in the incident.”

“We had registered a case against four persons we identified on the spot under various sections of IPC. When the investigation progressed and the details were collected, she was also arraigned,” he told PTI.

He also said that more persons might be arraigned in the case in the coming days. However, he was not ready to specify what crime was committed by the woman journalist and under which section of IPC she was booked. The officer said this would be decided only after a detailed interrogation.

In recently issued summons to the reporter, police said: “During the investigation, it is revealed that there are reasonable grounds to question you to ascertain facts and circumstances from you, in relation to the present investigation.”

Meanwhile, the opposition Congress criticised the Pinarayi Vijayan government over the issue and termed it as an “anti-democratic act.”

The registration of case against the journalist for reporting the incident was an “encroachment” on fearless and independent journalism, KPCC chief K Sudhakaran said.

He urged CM Vijayan, who holds the Home portfolio, to explain how it became a conspiracy if a journalist does her job. Strongly condemning the police action, the leader also urged the government to withdraw the case and restore press freedom in the southern state.

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