Mumbai police, media have reportedly failed Jyotirmoy Dey
By Madeline Earp/CPJ Senior Asia Research Associate
New Delhi-based Tehelka weekly news magazine has published a scathing indictment of the police investigation into the 2011 killing of Mumbai crime reporter Jyotirmoy Dey - and of the Indian media's coverage of it. Beneath the allegations and the rumor, we still don't know exactly why he was killed, while the self-confessed mastermind is a fugitive from justice. Meanwhile, a second journalist has been indicted for the crime on apparently flimsy evidence.
The plot thickens
On the face of it, Dey's death in June 2011 was a classic case of a veteran reporter executed for digging too deeply into the subject he had covered exhaustively for 22 years: Mumbai's criminal underbelly. But the investigation took an unexpected turn in November when police arrested Jigna Vora, the 37-year-old deputy bureau chief of Indian daily The Asian Age, claiming they had "strong evidence" implicating her in the murder, local news reports said. She denied wrongdoing, but more than three months later, she was indicted under organized crime laws for conspiring with mafia boss Chhota Rajan to kill Dey over a professional rivalry -- a charge which carries a possible death penalty, according to the reports. Local journalists reported that Dey may have been involved with a rival gang, even travelling to London to share information about Rajan's activities with an exiled don. Suddenly, the case didn't seem quite so straightforward.
CPJ spoke with several Indian press freedom advocates as the investigation developed, but no one knew what to make of it.
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