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Monday, Nov 10, 2003

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Scribes stage protest in Coimbatore

Our Bureau

Coimbatore , Nov. 9

JOURNALISTS from various media organisations staged a demonstration in Coimbatore to protest against the decision of the Tamil Nadu Assembly sentencing the Publisher, Editor, Executive Editor and two senior journalists of The Hindu and the Editor of Murasoli to imprisonment.

Gathering near the Red Cross building, the journalists, wearing black badges, raised slogans against attempts to trample upon the freedom of the press.

The State BJP President, Mr. C.P. Radhakrishnan, who represents Coimbatore in the Lok Sabha, met the journalists and expressed solidarity with them. Lauding the role played by the media in protecting democracy, he said people should take criticism with equanimity.

In Andhra Pradesh, the Andhra Pradesh Union of Working Journalists (APUWJ) and Visakhapatnam Journalists' Forum (VJF) jointly staged a demonstration in front of the RTC bus station here on Saturday and took out a procession.

Mr M.R.N Varma, President of the Visakhapatnam branch of APUWJ, said it was "a blatant, vindictive attempt by the Jayalalithaa Government to stifle the voices of The Hindu and Murasoli in the guise of protecting the dignity of the House''.

He said The Hindu had a history of 125 years of dedicated service to the nation and it was universally acknowledged to be a newspaper committed to certain values.

In Maharashtra the Press Club and the Mumbai Marathi Patrakar Sangh, as well as city activist groups and civil liberty organisations have called for protest meetings and demonstrations on Monday.

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