A photojournalist working for a Tamil publication was attacked allegedly by members of the Congress at a party rally that was being held in Tamil Nadu’s Virudhunagar on Saturday. The meeting was being held to explain the Congress manifesto for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls and was led by the President of Tamil Nadu Congress Committee KS Alagiri. Manickam Tagore, the party's candidate for Virudhunagar parliamentary constituency and former MLA from DMK Thangam Thennarasu were also present at the meeting.
According to reports, RM Muthuraja, a photo journalist working for the Vikatan group, was present at the public meeting in Virudhunagar on Saturday evening. He was clicking pictures of the event when he noticed several empty chairs at the rally. When he tried to click some pictures of them, some members of the Congress spotted him and attacked him. A 1-minute long video of the attack has gone viral on social media.
The video shows some people, allegedly members of the Congress, slapping and hitting Muthuraja, who tries to defend himself. The anchor on stage, who was heard welcoming people to the rally, turns his attention to the scuffle, which soon involves around 10-15 people, and is heard asking, “Who is that?”
Other journalists present at the spot rushed to Muthuraja’s rescue and defended him. In the video, someone is heard saying “How can you lay your hands on a journalist?” A scuffle then broke out between the cadres and the journalists which reportedly went on till Manickam Tagore reportedly came down from the dais to intervene and stop the scuffle. The Congress leader then took Muthuraja to a private hospital nearby. He later apologised and expressed regret for the incident, the journalists present at the spot later stated.
The Chennai Press Club has condemned the incident and has demanded strict action against those who attacked the journalist.
A few days ago, the police booked AIADMK workers who attacked a TV journalist for filming the people waiting for biriyani and cash distribution in a rally in Tirupattur near Vellore. The rally was organised in support of Agri Krishnamoorthy, the AIADMK candidate from Thiruvannamalai parliamentary constituency.