Bhubaneswar : In a shocking incident, a journalist from Odisha’s Balasore district was arrested for thrashing a cop by chaining him to a hospital bed while undergoing treatment.

A photograph of journalist Loknath Dalai had gone viral on various social media platforms. In that photo, Dalai was lying on the hospital floor with his legs handcuffed and tied with iron chains to the hospital bed.

According to sources, Dalai was allegedly called by the Nilgiris police on Wednesday morning for abusing and assaulting the home guards. He was later admitted to the hospital after he was allegedly assaulted by the police at the police station.

On 4 April, home guard Niranjan Rana lodged a complaint at the Nilgiris police station that Dalai abused her in filthy language, assaulted her and threatened dire consequences if she was on duty.

Dalai, who works as a Nilgiris reporter for a local media house, has alleged that his arrest was an attempt to take revenge against the police on certain news reports. He demanded action against IIC and another officer of Nilgiri police station.

Senior journalists from Odisha condemned the police excesses against the journalist and demanded strict action against the police personnel responsible for this.

Expressing deep concern over the incident, Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said that media is the fourth pillar of democracy.

He said, “In a democracy, difference of opinion should be respected. But handcuffing a journalist like a professional criminal is not acceptable in a healthy society.”

Pradhan has urged the senior police officers to conduct a proper inquiry and take strict action against the officials involved in this act.