Gauri Lankesh, a senior journalist, editor and activist, was shot dead by unidentified assailants outside her home in Bengaluru’s Rajarajeshwari Nagar on Tuesday evening at around 8 pm. Police said her body was found on the porch of her home in West Bengaluru. Ms Lankesh had just reached home and was about to enter when unidentified men shot at the 55-year-old journalist Lankesh from close range, three bullets hit her, one on the forehead.
Neighbours came out of a flat opposite the home where Guari Lankesh lived alone on what they thought were sounds of firecrackers and found the journalist lying in a pool of blood on her porch. One of her neighbour said, “Normally, Ms Gauri works late hours because she is a journalist. Today she seemed to have returned home earlier than usual.”
Manohar, the watchman at the apartments opposite the journalist’s house said. “I just sat down for dinner when I heard the firecracker type of sounds, i came out, there were people in all the balconies and the gate was lying open with a car waiting to enter. There was no one else around.” Some neighbours said to have seen two men moving up and down several times on a motorcycle on the street in the Ideal Homes colony in Rajarajeshwarinagar through the day.
According to Bengaluru Police Commissioner T Suneel Kumar, "A total of seven bullets were fired out on Ms Lankesh, four of which missed the target and hit the wall of the house. Three bullets had hit her - two in her chest area and one in the forehead.” The Police have also recovered four cartridges from the spot. Gauri’s body was taken to Victoria Hospital for a post-mortem.
On Tuesday evening, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said, “ There are two CC TV camera and police are investigating the case. Three police teams has been formed to investigate the murder of Journalist Gauri Lankesh and that the culprits must be caught.”
Gauri Lankesh was the elder daughter of P Lankesh, a man who brought in a new brand of Kannada journalism. Gauri followed in his footsteps, speaking her mind and running her own Kannada paper with views that were never careful or circumspect. She was also the part of a group that worked for communal harmony. Her views were considered Leftist and anti-Hindutva. MS Lankesh was also running the weekly Gauri 'Lankesh Patrike,' a Kannada tabloid, and was seen as a fearless and outspoken journalist.