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  • Journalists and civil society members across the country protested Lankesh

    Journalists and civil society members across the country protested Lankesh's murder. | Photo: Reuters

Protesters said they were fighting against the "communal forces (which) have taken the country to the brink of fascism."  

Almost ten thousand people have been taking part in a rally in the southern Indian city of Bengaluru to demand justice following the murder of the journalist, Gauri Lankesh.

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Indian Journalist's Murder Spark Nationwide Protests

The mass protest was held under the banner of "I am Gauri." 

Demonstrators said they were fighting against the "communal forces (which) have taken the country to the brink of fascism."  

"For the past one-and-a-half decades, Gauri Lankesh was at the forefront of struggles against anti-constitutional and anti-human elements. Not only that, there have been serial murders of several progressive thinkers who upheld the values of our Constitution," the organizers said at the meeting. 

They urged the Karnataka government to fast track the investigation into the journalist's murder.  

The Indian government has been criticised by several human rights groups and advocates for failing to condemn Lankesh's murder publically.

United Nations officials said in a recent statement that her death was a “terrible and painful tragedy” and a “vicious attack” on the freedom of the press. 

In a joint statement, three U.N. Special Rapporteurs said, "The Indian authorities should unequivocally condemn the killing of Gauri Lankesh, investigate it, bring all the perpetrators – including the masterminds – to account, and take seriously the safety of journalists." 

The experts said they were in contact with government officials. 

"India cannot afford to go on creating victims of hatred and intolerance. We urge the authorities to take steps to ensure a culture of diversity, in which everyone, including an independent media, can be safe to express their opinions," they said. 

Lankesh was shot in the head and chest on her doorstep of her home by gunmen on August 5.

The journalist wrote critically about the rgovernment as well as religious fundamentalism and the caste system.

She had also reported on the increasing levels of political intolerance in Karnataka towards media workers.

A new special edition issue of the "Lankesh Patrike" commemorating the journalist was also published on Tuesday. Lankesh was a senior editor of the anti-establishment publication.  

The special edition titled, "My voice cannot be silenced" is essentially an obituary.

Her family contributed a number of stories about her.

Lankesh's mother, Indira, wrote about how her daughter's fearless spirit had shaped her writing. 


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