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Saturday, Oct 23, 2021
Outlook.com

Cruel Is The Camera

Did ‘news’ hunters drive Shivali to suicide?

Cruel Is The Camera
Brijesh Sharma
Cruel Is The Camera
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

On August 30, Shivali, a 21-year-old student of S.D. College, Jalandhar, committed suicide by throwing herself in front of a train after news photographers took her photo while covering a drive against “eve-teasing” led by a woman police inspector. Shivali had pleaded with the photographers not to shoot her. They did not listen and she had threatened to kill herself if the photos were published. Within an hour, she had ended her life.

Like the shameful (and allegedly participatory) coverage by a news crew of the molestation of a teenager outside a Guwahati pub, this incident has raised serious questions about media ethics, intrusion and privacy. Appetite keened by competition, a predatory media is overstepping the line with nonchalance. The suicide also draws attention to so-called “anti-eve-teasing” drives, in which cops mostly humiliate couples seen together in parks and other public places.

On that day, inspector Balwinder Kaur, who heads the town’s anti-eve-teasing squad, was chasing couples out of a park near Shivali’s...

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