India's devastating Covid crisis: Country loses over 50 journos in two weeks
At a time when nations across the globe are preparing to observe the World Press Freedom Day on May 3, India is struggling with the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic as the country reportedly registered the deaths of 50 journalists in two weeks.
According to a study conducted by the Delhi-based Institute of Perception Studies, as many as 101 journalists have succumbed to COVID-19 between 1 April 2020 and 28 April 2021.
Firstpost reported that over 50 journalists have passed away due to COVID-related complications since January 2021. This implies, on average, about two journalists have died every day this month.
The study, which was conducted by Rate The Debate, an initiative of the Institute of Perception Studies, New Delhi, found that 56 journalists have succumbed to the virus in the last four months this year, from 1 January to 28 April.
Switzerland-based media rights and safety body Press Emblem Campaign (PEC) lamented the devastating impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had in India, which is one of the most affected nations in the world.
Over one thousand journalists across the world have lost their lives due to novel coronavirus aggravated ailments.
"This is an unprecedented slaughter and a great loss for the profession," said PEC secretary-general Blaise Lempen adding, “On the occasion of World Press Freedom Day, we call for honouring eminent colleagues of all ages who have not survived the pandemic.”
He appealed to all concerned governments to take action to help the media most affected and support the families of the victims on this auspicious occasion.
PEC also highlighted a need to distribute vaccines equally all over the world, to stop the spread of the virus and its new strains in developing countries.
As of April 21 2021, within 14 months since March 2020, the PEC has counted more than 1,200 journalists, who died from Covid-19 complications in 75 countries.
By region, Latin America tops the list with more than half of the victims, over 670 in 20 countries. Asia follows with over 255 in 18 countries, then Europe with over 175 in 19 countries. Africa comes next with over 54 dead in 16 countries, ahead of North America with over 45 in two countries.
India’s neighbour Bangladesh recorded 52 journo-victims to Covid-19, followed by Pakistan (26 dead), Afghanistan (9) and Nepal (7). Other neighbours namely Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Myanmar etc have not reported any media corona-casualty.
The Indian media fraternity lately lost SK Vyas, Anirban Bora, Kanu Priya, Kalyan Baruah, Adwaita Prasad Biswal, Debendra Samantray, Ramendra Singh, Rohit Sardana, Nilakshi Bhattacharyya, Kakoli Bhattacharya, Venga Reddy, Aiyushman Dutta, Tanmoy Chakraborty, Bhanu Prakash Rath, Manas Ranjan Jaipuria, Amjad Badshah, Sridhar Dharmasanam, Raju Mishra, Sadanand Shinde, Kondra Srinivas Goud, Sammi Reddy, Akash Saxena, Khwaja Mujahiduddin, Anil Basnoi, Madiraju Harikrishna Giri, Syed Shabaz, etc to the corona-pandemic.
(Edited By Ibankyntiew Mawrie)
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