Journalists covering Burabazar fire assaulted

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Kolkata, Jan 14 (UNI) As the 12th floor of the Nandaram market continued to billow out huge plumes of fire, the scene on the ground also caught the heat when some vandals attacked journalists, leaving five injured and damaged cameras and Outside Broadcasting (OB) vans.

The incident happened at about 1130 hrs when a few private television journalists were reporting the Burabazar inferno live.

A group of people, allegedly armed with iron rods and sticks and sporting blue badges, attacked the scribes indiscriminately, damaging their cameras and OB vans.

The assault continued for 10-12 minutes leaving five reporters injured. One of them was taken to hospital.

''I have heard about the incident. An additional commissioner of police has been appointed to investigate the matter. A police contingent has been rushed to the spot,'' City Police Commissioner Gautam Mohan Chakraborty told UNI.

OB vans of NDTV, TimesNow, Star Ananda, Kolkata TV and Zee TV were attacked. At least one camera was stolen and five were damaged.

However, the Burrabazar Traders Association pleaded innocent.

They apologised to the scribes over the public address system and sought media's support.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje has taken up the matter with her West Bengal counterpart. A six-member team from the Rajasthan government, led by Education Minister Kalicharan Saraf, also visited the site.

Former Vice-President Bhairon Singh Sekhawat is scheduled to visit the site tomorrow.

UNI BA PL AKJ KN1604

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