Geneva/ Guwahati, 26 April 2021: Now it is alarming for the Indian media fraternity as their journo-colleagues start collapsing to the Covid-19 complications now as fast as three scribes per day. India with 107 media corona-casualties has already placed itself on the third position just below Brazil (181 dead) and Peru (140) in the list of Covid-19 victims among journalist, prepared by the Switzerland based media rights & safety body Press Emblem Campaign (www.pressemblem.ch/).
The global tally reaches 1184 victim-journalists because of the Covid-19 pandemic in 76 countries since it broke out in March 2020, where the other worse affected countries include Mexico (106 dead), Italy (52), Bangladesh (51), Colombia (49), USA (47), Ecuador (46), United Kingdom (28), Dominican Republic (27), Pakistan (25), Turkey (24), Iran, Russia (21 each), Argentina, Venezuela (17 each), Panama (16), Spain (15), Ukraine (14), etc.
PEC general secretary Blaise Lempen, while expressing apprehensions that the situation may worsen for the safety of journalists on the ground due to the pandemic, advocates for adequate compensations to the victim families. He also emphasizes on early vaccinations to media workers around the world so that they can perform their duties as corona warriors after the doctors, nurses, sanitation workers, etc without endangering their precious lives.
Even after the launch of a massive corona-vaccination program covering over 21, 443,345 citizens till now in the backdrop of over three million reported infections every day mounting its cumulative Covid-19 cases to over 17.3 million (total casualty crosses 1,95,000), India lately witnessed the death of journalists namely Amjad Badshah (Odisha), Tanmoy Chakraborty (Tripura), Vivek Bendre, Sachin Shinde, Jairam Sawant, Sukhnandan Gavai (Maharashtra), Ram Prakash Gupta (Bihar), Rohitash Gupta (Uttar Pradesh), Ramjan Ali (Andhra Pradesh), etc.
“The probability to increase the number of media corona-victims in India is really higher as a number of established media houses had not reported about the actual number of casualties, reasons best known the them,” commented PEC’s country representative Nava Thakuria adding that many media houses even showed callousness while reporting their own corona-positive cases probably to avoid the authority’s interference under the existing health protocols.