In a shocking incident, a senior journalist Gauri Lankesh has been shot dead at her residence in Bengaluru by miscreants on Tuesday evening.  

According to initial reports, it’s being suggested as a premeditated murder. Around three assailants entered her Bengaluru residence and fired three shots at her as soon as she opened the door.  

“She was shot dead from a close range at her house in Rajarajeshwari Nagar around 8PM,” Bengaluru Police Commissioner T Suneel Kumar informed reporters.

Three unidentified assailants fired three to five bullets at Lankesh, with one hitting her in the forehead and another in the chest, and fled as she collapsed on the spot.

“We will register a case of murder under Section 320 of the Indian Penal Code and set up a special team to nab her killers,” a police official said. 

“There has been a shootout at Gauri Lankesh’s house this evening; she is no more. Body found in her veranda,” MN Anucheth, DCP, West said while speaking to media. 

Gauri Lankesh was a famous writer, left leaning and naxal sympathiser. She was the daughter of P Lankesh who is a veteran journalist.

Her siblings Indrajit Lankesh and Kavitha Lankesh are both film-makers in the Kannada film industry.

Expressing his thoughts on Gauri Lankesh’s murder, Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah took to his Twitter account and said, “Absolutely shocked to learn about the murder of renowned journalist Gauri Lankesh, I have no words to condemn this heinous crime. He further added that Gauri Lankesh murder  is an assassination on democracy. Karnataka has lost a strong progressive voice and I have lost a friend.”

Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi also reacted on this shocking murder of senior Journalist saying that the truth will never be silenced.

Dwarkanath, a friend of senior journalist Gauri Lankesh said, “This is a cowardly act, she is just a writer and journalist, not a terrorist or naxalite.”

Gauri was a very prominent figure in Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah’s government scheme of things. She was representing  artists, writers and scribes in Bengaluru. She was actively involved in government schemes. 

Speaking on this unfortunate incident, Senior Journalist Madhav Das Nalapat said, “She was one of the bravest Journalist I have ever met and one who clearly used to speak her mind. What has happened is a shame for the country that a journalist of such a stature has been shot dead in barbaric way.

“A journalist has to be given some kind of freedom,” Press Club President Gautam Lehari said. 

Meanwhile, top police officials and state Home Minister Ramalinga Reddy have also reached the spot. 

Addressing the media, Ramalinga Reddy said, “There are two CCTV cameras; three teams are working on this.”

Briefing the media about the incident, Bangalore Commissioner of Police said, “We found Gauri Lankesh lying in a pool of blood; found four empty cartridges from the scene of offence. Out of four, how many entered her body, only post mortem report will tell.”

“Number of assailants are not clear yet. People in front of her house heard gunshots, saw Gauri Lankesh collapsed in verandah before entering her house,” the Police Commissioner said. 

“She didn’t complain of anything. If she anywhere expressed about threats, it will be thoroughly investigated,” Police Commissioner added. 

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee also expressed her “alarm” over Lankesh’s killing and demanded justice.

(With inputs from IANS)

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