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Cops still clueless on culprits involved in scribe attack

July 21, 2012 16:37 IST

Arunachal Pradesh police are yet to make a breakthrough in the case where a woman journalist was shot in Itanagar on July 15 even as the demand for the Central Bureau of Investigation to handle investigations gained momentum, official sources said on Saturday.

Police have already rounded up six persons and is maintaining vigilance on twelve others while probing various angles to crack the case, Capital Complex Superintendent of police Hibu Tamang said.

"We have taken up the case as a challenge with all possible steps on to solve it at the earliest," Tamang said.

Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Nabam Tuki had on Friday said the case would be handed over to other premier investigating agencies if the state police failed to make a breakthrough.

Talking to reporters, he said no stone would be left unturned to nab the culprits who shot at Tongam Rina, the associate editor of Arunachal Times.

Tuki said he had already directed the police department to carry out an extensive inquiry, in a time bound manner, in order to catch the culprits.

Referring to previous attacks on media persons and media houses, including the April 15 vandalisation of Arunachal Times office, Hibu Tamang said, "Police being human beings cannot be expected to be omnipresent and omniscient."

"We seek the wholehearted willing cooperation of the civil society to crack the cases and also to maintain law and order to restore the confidence of the people," he said.

On investigation into the April 15 vandalisation, Tamang said though the police had collected the CCTV camera footage depicting figures of a few youths, but the faces were not clear due to poor resolution.

Therefore, the difficulty in identifying the accused is dragging the process of investigation, he said.

However, the probe is on with full commitment. Chief Minister Tuki has issued specific directives not to tolerate lawlessness or to allow any criminal go scot-free and to deal with the situation with an iron hand, he said.

Meanwhile, Tuki has appealed to the media fraternity to reconsider their agitation --currently boycotting government news and advertisements for 15 days since July 15.

Tuki also assured to provide security to all the media houses in and around Capital Complex and said hi-definition CCTV cameras will be installed at all strategic points.

He further suggested proprietors of these organisations to introduce their own security personnel for which his government would provide arms license.

Meanwhile, the demand for handing over the journalist attack case to the CBI is apparently gaining momentum with several organisations marching out rallies for this throughout the state.

In a four-point memorandum, the Arunachal Pradesh Women Welfare Society on Friday made a fervent appeal to the Governor to entrust investigations with the central probe agency.

The memorandum also urged for installation of surveillance gadgets like CCTV cameras at Capital Complex, and setting up of District Grievances Cell in order to facilitate easy access of legal aid to women.

Tongam Rina, 34, of the Arunachal Times was shot from close range when she was entering her office on July 15.

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