Mumbai, April 20 (IANS) The International Press Institute (IPI), Vienna has reacted to the attack on "The Week" magazine's office in Mumbai, strongly condemning the brutal attack on the media organization and its employees, a statement released here said Friday.
In a letter dated April 19 written to Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram and Maharashtra's Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan, the IPI called upon the authorities to take immediate and effective action against the perpetrators.
"The IPI strongly condemns this brutal attack on a media organisation and its employees and calls on the authorities to take immediate and effective action against the perpetrators," wrote Carl-Eugen Eberle, Chairman, International Press Institute (IPI) Executive Board.
"The IPI was informed that the attack was led by an elected corporator of Mumbai city," he added.
Several activists of the Shiv Sena-affiliated Bharatiya Kamgar Sena (BKS) Thursday vandalised the office of The Week in south Mumbai and assaulted staffers.
"The IPI was informed that a mob of 20 persons, which reportedly included Kishori Pednekar, Corporator of Brihan Mumbai Municipal Corporation (Greater Mumbai Municipal Corporation), barged into the office of The Week magazine at Lower Parel, Mumbai today, Thursday, April 19, 2012, at around 10 a.m.," said Eberle.
"Journalists in India informed the IPI secretariat that the mob marched into the area housing the magazine's circulation department and surrounded the circulation team, who were on their morning shift," he added.
Eberle further said that IPI sources had told the IPI secretariat that the merchandisers of the magazine, who work for the magazine's distribution agent in the city, were also part of the mob.
"The mob reportedly attacked the circulation staff of the magazine without any provocation and severely beat up Geoji Eapen Zachariah, Deputy General Manager of the Sales Department. Three other staff members - Prajesh Kurup, Gururaj Chavan and Satish Gambhir - also suffered injuries," he said.
"The mob continued assaulting the staff members even after colleagues in neighbouring offices rushed to rescue the victims."
The IPI is a global network of editors, leading journalists and media executives dedicated to safeguarding press freedom and promoting good standards of journalism.
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