Guwahati(Assam), Sept 28 : Journalists’ Forum Assam (JFA) expresses its profound grief over the untimely demise of news presenter and announcer Golap Saikia to the novel corona virus infection aggravated ailments. Saikia (52), who worked as a casual newsreader in All India Radio Guwahati, was feeling unwell for some days and later hospitalized, where tested positive for Covid-19. The soft-spoken gentleman breathed his last on Sept 26 2020 in the hospital.
Hailng from Khutikotia of Nagaon locality in central Assam, Saikia initially worked as a casual announcer at AIR Nagaon. He also used to present news bulletins in Guwahati Doordarshan along with private satellite news channels like DY365, NewsLive, PrimeNews, etc. Saikia,who was also associated with various cultural activities, left his wife, a minor daughter and a host of relatives and well-wishers.
Earlier, Assam witnessed two journo-victims of the Covid-19 pandemic as Udalguri based correspondent Dhaneswar Rabha (35) died at Guwahati medical college hospital on 6 September. Rabha is the first scribe in northeast India to succumb to Covid-19 complications. He was suffering from renal problems and went for regular dialysis. Rabha left behind his parents, wife, two kids, a host of relatives.
Next day, senior journalist Ashim Dutta passed away at Silchar medical college hospital. Dutta (65), who worked for a Bengali daily in Barak valley, was also suffering from kidney problems. He was admitted to the hospital after testing positive for the novel corona virus infection. A pass-out from Gauhati University, Dutta left behind his wife, only daughter and other relatives.
The printer-publisher of AsomiyaKhabar (Rantu Das) also died at a Guwahati hospital and later tested positive for the virus infection.
Terming the journalists as corona-warriors along with the doctors, nurses, sanitation workers, police personnel etc, JFA president Rupam Barua and secretary Nava Thakuria urges the media fraternity to be careful while reporting the pandemic from the ground.
Lately India as a nation lost eight working journalists to Covid-19 complications within twelve days. The latest victim surfaces Indore (Madhya Pradesh), where senior journalist Manoj Binwal died of the virus infection in the hospital. Binwal (55), who worked for Hindi newspaper Prajatantra, was hospitalized after testing positive for Covid-19 and breather his last on Sept 20.
A day back, Agra based journalist Ami Adhar Nidar (50) died of the virus infection at Medanta hospital, Gurugram. Associated with widely circulated Hindi newspaper DainikJagaran, the popular journalist was hospitalized after he tested positive for Covid-19. He left behind his wife, one son and one daughter with other relatives.
Earlier, Anil Srivastava (68) from Basti in Jammu locality succumbed to Covid-19 complications on 18 September. Worked for the United News of India for many years, Srivastava died at Basti medical college hospital. Survived by his wife, two sons and other relatives, the journalist also edited local newspapers namely VicharParakh and PrakashTimes. Same day, Madhya Pradesh lost one of its senior journalists to Covid-19. Harish Choubey (60), who worked for popular Hindi newspaper DainikBhaskar from Jabalpur, was hospitalized after testing positive for the virus infection.
Aurangabad based senior journalist Rahul Dolare (49) died of Covid-19 on Sept 14in the government hospital. He was associated with a local newspaper and hospitalized after complaining of mild fever. Chennai based Tamil journalist-actor Florent C Pereira (67) also died same day in the hospital. Used to work for Kalaignar TV, Win TV and Vijay TV, Pereira was hospitalized after he tested positive for Covid-19.
Abohar (Punjab) based journalist Naresh Bajaj (57) succumbed to Covid-19 complications on Sept 10. Bajaj worked for SachKahoon newspaper and he was very active as a frontline corona activist. Ravinder Kumar (30) from Una locality in Himachal Pradesh died of Covid-19 on Sept 9. Working for DainikJagran, Kumar was not feeling well for some time. He was sent to the hospital after developing symptoms of Covid-19 and he died on the way. His cremation was conducted following Covid-19 protocols.
Weeks back, Mumbai based senior film-journalist Shyam Sarma, Nellore (Andhra Pradesh) based scribe Narayanam Seshacharyulu, Pune based television reporter Pandurang Raikar, Kanpur based television journalist Neelanshu Shukla, Patiala based photojournalist Jai Deep,Tirupati based television reporter Madhusudan Reddy & video journalist M Parthasarathy succumbed to the infections.
The list also includes television reporter Ramanathan & news videographer E Velmurugan from Chennai, news presenter Davinder Pal Singh from Chandigarh, television scribe Manoj Kumar from Hyderabad, print-journalist Pankaj Kulashrestha from Agra, Orissa’s journalists Simanchal Panda, K Ch Ratnam & Priyadarshi Patnaik, etc. Kolkata based photojournalist Ronny Roy became the first Indian scribe to lose his battle against the dreaded virus. New Delhi scribe Tarun Sisodia killed himself undergoing Covid-19 treatment at AIIMS. Maharashtra’s veteran journalist Ashok Churi, who edited Marathi weekly PalgharTimes, died at a Palghar based hospital, who later tested positive for Covid-19.