A tussle broke out at the Patiala House court when the reporters were covering the sedition case against JNUSU president Kanhaiya Singh who was arrested on Friday on charges of sedition.
One of the reporter who was covering the proceedings at the Patiala House courts, on Monday afternoon overheard a lawyer telling one of his sources that there would be some “hungama” at the complex.
The reporter ignored his as remark. But after a while the group of lawyers at the Patiala House court complex threatened the members of the media, crudely, physically assaulted and some of them were freely abused for being “anti-national”.
The reporter said around 2pm they saw the women teachers of JNU being manhandled in the courtroom and the two JNU students were also beaten by lawyers with the indulgent of police personnel.
The lawyers forced the people from JNU to vacate the room as soon as they saw the reporters. The lawyers adopted the violent methods.
The reporter said. ”The agitators’ attention then turned to us. We thought our press ID cards would guarantee us safety, but of course that wasn’t to be. A journalist who sported a beard was called a traitor and his ID dismissed as fake by the assailants.”
He added. ”I was told that I looked like a JNU student and was abused harshly for looking at my attackers in the eye. The frenzied lawyers threatened to teach us, “deshdrohi (traitorous) journalists”, a lesson. “Bone bhi todenge aur phone bhi todenge, (We will break your phones as well as your bones,” said an angry advocate.
The reporter said he thought things would be fine once the judge emerged from his chamber. But the judge did not make an appearance. He said the lawyers continued there torture physically and mentally.
He said when a journalist took out his phone to record a clip of lawyers. He was encounter by the lawyer some lawyers locked up four journalists inside the courtroom. They kicked and punched them.
The women journalist were advised by the female cops to “understand the mood and go away”. The reporter said.”We thought the senior most judicial officer of the Patiala House Court, the district judge, would be able to help us. We ran the few metres from where we were to the district judge’s court and asked the staff there to get us an appointment with the judge, only to be told that he was “sitting with a very senior cop” and could not come out”.
He added.”A mob of around eight chased us, forced their entry into the district judge’s court and surrounded us on all sides. They snatched our phones and checked the devices for videos and photos. They made menacing gestures, but finally relented when the court staff requested them to leave us alone.”
Any how the reporters managed to escape the court premises from the rear gate, which was the only one open, at 3.45pm.