Indian journalist gunned down outside her home

Gauri Lankesh who ran a weekly Kannada tabloid was shot dead outside her house in Bengaluru

Gauri Lankesh who ran a weekly Kannada tabloid was shot dead outside her house in Bengaluru

Noted journalist and editor Gauri Lankesh, who was shot dead by unidentified men outside her home in Bengaluru, has never restrained herself in the past to speak about right-wing elements indulging in violence in the state.

Gauri Lankesh, a senior Indian journalist known for her criticism of Hindu extremism, was shot dead at her home on Tuesday evening.

"We learnt that the victim was shot dead from close range when she was standing at her house in Rajarajeswari Nagar (in the suburbs) around 8.00 p.m.", a senior police officer said. She was convicted by a magisterial court in Hubballi past year in connection with a defamation case filed by BJP MP Pralhad Joshi and party office bearer Umesh Doshi who had objected to publication of a report against them in her periodical on January 23, 2008.

Born in 1962, Ms Lankesh was the older daughter of P Lankesh, who edited Kannada weekly tabloid "Lankesh Patrike" for two decades since 1980.

Union Minister Nitin Gadkari on Wednesday said the BJP, or any organisation linked to the party were not involved in the killing of journalist Gauri Lankesh.

"I have no words to condemn this heinous crime", chief minister Siddaramaiah said on Twitter late Tuesday.

The AICC statement said that Gandhi had spoken to Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and urged him to swiftly bring the culprits to book.

At the National Convention of Human Rights Defenders in March this year in New Delhi, she said, "Karnataka's trajectory from a progressive, secular state to a communal state has been very interesting and crippling one. Why was she such a threat to them?" Her murder is an attempt to stifle reason, to silence those holding contrarian views. Whatever differences she had with anyone, it was certainly not the way to attack an outspoken journalist who was defenceless and had nothing to offer by way of resistance.

Expressing her deepest condolences to Lankeshs family and friends, the Congress president said she offered her prayers.

Bangalore University students boycott clasees in protest against Gauri Lankesh murder. She was, however, granted bail and allowed to appeal the verdict. "We got the information just now. We are still investigating", he said.

Among the first to condemn the murder was Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, who described it as "alarming", while Rahul Gandhi said: "Truth can not be silenced".

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