Senior journalist Gauri Lankesh, an outspoken critic of Hindutva politics, was shot dead in Bengaluru on Tuesday. Karnataka police chief R K Dutta said Lankesh was shot dead by unidentified assailants at the entrance of her residence in Rajrajeshwari Nagar. Lankesh, in her 50s, edited a Kannada tabloid Gauri Lankesh Patrike besides owning some other publications. Dutta said Lankesh had not voiced apprehension about any threat to her life during a couple of meetings he had with her. Asked about who could be the possible suspects in the killing, the officer refused to hazard any guess, saying “let the investigation proceed first.” Karnataka Home Minister Ramalinga Reddy condemned the incident, calling it unfortunate.
Lankesh was convicted in a defamation case filed by Bharatiya Janata Party MP Prahlad Joshi over a report published in her tabloid against some saffron party leaders. Several people in media and public life took to twitter to express shock at Lankesh’s killing.”As a friend, colleague & admirer for decades shocked & shattered to hear of the murder of Gauri Lankesh, one of India’s gutsiest journalists,” said Vir Sanghvi, an eminent media personality.
“If it is BJP ruled state, Liberals would have cried for emergency, Intolerance, Fascism,” tweeted National Conference leader and former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah. Lawyer-activist Prashant Bhushan tweeted: “Shocking & tragic! Brave journalist Gauri Lankesh who exposed the BJP has been shot dead in her home in Bangalore!