A journalist shouts slogans during a protest against the killing of a TV news reporter Shantanu Bhowmick, who was abducted and killed while covering a protest rally in Tripura on September 21

United Nations culture body Unesco on Friday deplored the killing of Shantanu Bhowmick, a TV reporter who was beaten to death covering violent clashes in Tripura, and called for a probe into his murder.

“I condemn the killing of Shantanu Bhowmick,” said Unesco director general Irina Bokova.

“I trust the authorities will conduct an investigation into this killing and bring its perpetrators to justice. It is essential that journalists be able to keep us informed of events without fearing for their lives.”

Bhowmick, a journalist for cable television channel Dinraat, was attacked on Wednesday outside Agartala, capital of Tripura, while reporting clashes between warring rival political factions and police.

Bhowmick’s death came just two weeks after the murder of Gauri Lankesh, a newspaper editor and outspoken critic of the ruling Hindu nationalist party whose killing in the southern city of Bengaluru on September 5 sparked an outpouring of anger.

A total of 29 journalists have been killed in India since the 1990s according to the Committee to Protect Journalists watchdog.

The Reporters without Borders press freedom group in 2015 ranked India the deadliest country in Asia for journalists.

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