Murders of Indian Journalists Raise Alarm Bells for Press Safety and Freedom

Murders of Indian Journalists Raise Alarm Bells for Press Safety and Freedom
Demonstrators hold placards as they participate in a protest condemning the killing of journalist Gauri Lankesh, New Delhi, India, Sept. 7, 2017 (AP photo by Altaf Qadri).

Editor’s Note: This article is part of an ongoing series about press freedom and safety in various countries around the world.

The murders of two journalists in India in September were just the latest sign of the growing threat to press freedom in the country. In addition to outright attacks on their lives, Indian journalists face mounting pressure to not report on sensitive topics like extremism or on stories that are critical of the government and major businesses. In an email interview, Steven Butler, the Asia Program coordinator for the Committee to Protect Journalists, discusses the troubling history of violence against journalists in India, the state of press freedom and safety in the country and the response of the public to these disturbing trends.

WPR: What do we know about the recent murders of journalists in India? Are these isolated incidents or chronic occurrences?

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