[one of the local politicians who led the attack]
A journalist receiving treatment for assault injuries at the Eppawala hospital, has been threatened by a group of men who arrived at the hospital premises yesterday. Media groups in Anuradhapura have requested police to provide protection to the injured journalist. The victim, Anuradhapura Regional Correspondent for Hiru TV and our sister paper Ada newspaper Tisara Samal Somaratne has identified the men who threatened him to be supporters of North-Central Province (NCP) Chief Minister S.M. Ranjith Samarakoon.
Journalist Tisara, was attacked on Friday, while covering an incident where a group performing a street drama on good governance were attacked by a gang including Thalawa UPFA Pradeshiya Sabha member Vasantha Bandara and Coordinating Secretary to the Chief Minister, Uditha Nishantha, said Rajarata Mediamen, a media organisation.
“They told me to leave the hospital or they would kill my parents in front of me,” he said. No suspects have been arrested so far.
“We will continue to conduct investigations into the two separate attacks on the journalist. We hope to bring those responsible to justice,” said police spokesman Senior Superintendent of Police, Ajith Rohana.
Meanwhile, journalists in the area plan to carry out a protest opposite the Anuradhapura central bus stand today, condemning the attack.
The Mass Communications Journalist Association together with the North-Western Province Journalists Association and the Cooperative Society for Media Personnel has requested the NCP Deputy Inspector General (DIG), Ravi Wijegunawardena to probe into the matter. They also requested police protection for the journalist at the hospital and his parents who reside in Eppawala.