Smugglers are ruling the roost in Garo Hills district of Meghalaya. A freelance journalist Biplab Dey from Garo hills, was assaulted by timber smugglers at 10.30 on Tuesday night in Athiabari, West Khasi Hills District, Meghalaya.
The journalist was assaulted when he went to captured the evidence of illegal transportation of timbers from Garo hills to Assam. He was attacked by the group that is running the illegal business racket.
The culprits took away the camera and mobile phone of the journalist to destroy evidence.
The group responsible for the attack on the journalist has been identified as some of the members of the All Rabha Student’s Union.
Meanwhile Meghalaya Electronic Media Association (MEMA) and the Shillong Press Club has strongly condemned the attack on the journalist Biplab Dey. They considered this act as an attack on the fundamental right of freedom of speech and expression. They have urged the state police to take immediate action against the culprits to encourage the media to do their duty diligently and fearlessly.
Shillong Press Club wished the journalist a speedy recovery and iterates it’s belief that journalists will never be cowed down by such acts of cowardice.
Rampant smuggling has been going on the area, without any legal action by the authorities. Trees are being felled regularly in violation of the Supreme Court order.