New Delhi, Dec 1, 2013 (Agency)
The Delhi Union of Journalists (DUJ) has urged the media to avoid "sensationalism" while covering the trial of Tehelka founder Tarun Tejpal, who faces rape charges in a Goa court.
"The DUJ urges the media to curb its ‘over the top' coverage of the issue, avoid sensationalism and desist from conducting a medial trial of Tejpal and (former Tehelka managing editor Shoma) Chaudhary," the DUJ said.
"Even in the heat of the moment one must not lose sight of the citizen's right to not answer questions raised by the media," it said in a statement.
The DUJ and its Gender and Ethics Council also condemned Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Vijay Jolly for a noisy protest held outside Shoma Chaudhary's house last week.
"These self appointed custodians of morality arrived at Chaudhary's residence and in full view of TV cameras Jolly painted the word ‘Accused' on her nameplate, also painting a thick arrow pointing to her name.
"The fact is that Choudhary is not an accused in the case of sexual assault by Tejpal on a young journalist.
"Had it not been for the intervention of Delhi Police, Choudhary would have been attacked by a mob of BJP workers led by Jolly.
"Jolly (said) he was enraged at the way Choudhary had failed to protect the dignity of a woman, completely losing sight of the fact that he was outraging the dignity of another woman.
"The subsequent 'apology' of Jolly for 'hurting sentiments' has to be taken with a pinch of salt.
"The DUJ wishes to underline that this is not a matter of hurt sentiments but that of rowdyism, hooliganism and lumpenism.
"After the protest at Tehelka office, the needless attack on Choudhary's residence was a cheap publicity stunt."