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Badruddin Ajmal gets flak for abusing journalist

Organisations protest AIUDF chief's behaviour towards journalist, and demand public apology

By A Staff Reporter in Guwahati
  • Published 28.12.18, 1:16 AM
  • Updated 28.12.18, 1:16 AM
  • a min read
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Journalists at a protest rally in Dibrugarh on Thursday. Picture by UB Photos

Many organisations on Thursday flayed AIUDF chief Badruddin Ajmal for allegedly abusing a television reporter for asking him questions on the party’s alliance possibilities with the BJP and the Congress.

Ajmal had on Wednesday allegedly called the reporter “dog” and threatened to hit him with a microphone when the reporter asked him whether his party would be with the ruling party at the Centre, be it the Congress or the BJP.

Later in the day, Ajmal, in a tweet, described the incident as “unintentional aberration” and apologised. He said the reporter had asked “silly question every time.”

However, protests erupted against Ajmal’s behaviour on Thursday. Various organisations condemned him, burnt his effigies, demanded his arrest and a public apology.

“We condemn the incident. People who do not respect the democratic spirit of a country should not be in politics. Reporters can raise any issue. Ajmal could have diplomatically replied to the question. Instead, he attempted to attack the reporter. We condemn it,” said Dipanka Kumar Nath, president of the All Assam Students’ Union (AASU).

“We warn Ajmal to stay away from such behaviour in future. Such wild behaviour and use of undemocratic language cannot be accepted from a parliamentarian. He should publicly apologise,” said AASU general secretary Lurinjyoti Gogoi.

Journalists at Dudhnoi in Goalpara district of lower Assam burnt Ajmal’s effigy and decided to boycott the AIUDF till Ajmal apologised publicly. In Nalbari and Dibrugarh, AASU activists and journalists organised protests condemning Ajmal’s behaviour and demanded an apology from him. Protesters burnt his effigy in Dibrugarh. Journalists in lower Assam’s South Salmara-Mancachar district, where the incident took place, held a silent protest in front of the office of the deputy commissioner and sent a letter to chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal about the incident.

Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti adviser Akhil Gogoi demanded Ajmal’s arrest for threatening a journalist and a legislation for the protection of journalists.

“He should be immediately arrested,” Akhil said.

Members of several journalists’ organisations wore black badges and staged a protest at Ganesh Udyan in Ganeshguri here.

The All Assam Tribal Organisations also condemned the incident and demanded a public apology from Ajmal.

Additional reporting by Pradip Kr Neog in Duliajan