Statement on Ambedkar-Phule: Mumbai Press Club condemns arrest of Pune scribe Govind Wakade

In a strongly worded statement, the press club did not only condemn his arrest and also pointed out that minister Chandrakant Patil had levelled allegations without proper investigation or concrete evidence.

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Monday, December 12, 2022, 03:35 PM IST
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Statement on Ambedkar-Phule: Mumbai Press Club condemns arrest of Pune scribe Govind Wakade | Twitter

Police probing the ink attack on Maharashtra minister Chandrakant Patil in Pimpri Chinchwad city summoned a television journalistGovind Wakade in connection with the case for his alleged role in the incident. He was allowed to go on Sunday late at night.

The Mumbai Press Club on Monday, December 12, issued a statement condemning his arbitrary detention. In their statement, the club wrote, "The Mumbai Press Club strongly condemns the arbitrary detention in police custody of TV channel News18 journalist Govind Wakade at Pimpri Chinchwad on Saturday evening."

In support of Wakade, they further wrote that he was covering a Maharahtra Education Minister Chandrakant Patil near Pune and ink was hurled at him for "making comments on social reformers Jyotiba Phule and Babasaheb Ambedkar".

"The minister, without any investigation or evidence, accused Govind Wakade of being part of the planned protest and directed the police to detain and press charges against the journalist," they wrote.

"While the Press Club does not support any violent forms of protest, it condemns Minister Chandrakant Patil for using the police to intimidate and harass the journalist who was merely doing his duty.The collective voice of journalists in the state finally led to the late-night release of Wakade on Sunday. However, it is high time the state government lays down rules for investigative agencies that ensure journalists on duty are not harassed," they added.

Why was ink hurled at Chandrakant Patil?

The ink was thrown on Patil on Saturday in an apparent protest against his statement that B R Ambedkar and social reformer Jyotiba Phule didn't seek government grants for running educational institutions.

The use of the word "begged" by Patil, who is the state's minister for higher and technical education, stirred a controversy, leading to the ink attack.

After the incident, police suspended 10 personnel including three officers for the security lapse.

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