Machavaram Police Unlawfully Detain Sakshi Photographer  

Journalists staged a protest on the road in front of the Machavaram police station - Sakshi Post

Amaravati: A photographer belonging to the Sakshi Media Group was unlawfully arrested by the AP police on Friday. Though he repeatedly told them that he was a photo journalist of Sakshi media group and produced ID cards, the cops did not pay heed. It is said that Machavaram police were acting on the instructions of the intelligence chief of the state, AB Venkateswara Rao, thereby keeping the photographer in their custody for hours.

After journalists staged a protest on the road in front of the Machavaram police station, the police were forced to climb down and released Sakshi photographer, Vijayakrishna. It may be recalled that in the light of Election Commission’s orders, the Andhra Pradesh government had to relieve DG Intelligence, AB Venkateswara Rao and keep him away from election duties.

In this context, when Sakshi photographer Vijayakrishna learnt that cops of the Intelligence wing were transporting large amounts of money belonging to TDP candidates in their vehicles, he reached the place. Policemen belonging to the Intelligence wing who noticed him, took him into the office and held him in their custody. They demanded that he delete the pictures he had taken and when the photographer told him that his camera had some important election related pictures, they continued to threaten him. The cops then called their own photographer, snatched the Sakshi photo journalist's camera and gave it to him to delete the photographs and format the chip. Not stopping there, they seized his ID cards and cell phone.

When Sakshi State bureau in charge N. Venkat Reddy Reddy called up DG Intelligence AB Venkateswara Rao in this matter, and questioned him on the photographer’s unlawful arrest, he said that the photo journalist had been handed over to the local police and cut the call. When he called the Vijayawada police commissioner Dwaraka Tirumala Rao, the officer said that he had no information and that he would find out.

Journalists who came to know about the illegal detention of the photographer belonging to Sakshi media group staged a protest in front of the Machavaram police station. The policemen told the journalists that orders from their bosses on his release, were awaited. The Machavaram police station CI, Srinivas Yadav told journalists that the photo journalist would be let off if he gave a letter of apology for having gone to the Intelligence office. When the journalists questioned the need for such a letter when he did no wrong and sat down in protest, demanding the release of the photographer, the local police officials scrambled to get in touch with their bosses. CI Srinivas Yadav contacted the police commissioner and other officials and released the photographer.

Meanwhile the President of AP Working Journalists Federation (APWJF) N Venkat Rao faulted the police for such actions which amount to an assault on press freedom. He said that the policemen committed such excesses even after the photo journalist showed his identity card.

Also Read: DGP Thakur Transported Rs 35 Crores In His Vehicle From Amaravati To Prakasam

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