Journo assaulted outside Emvies venue, Ad Club biggies accused of casual response

14 Sep,2015

By A Correspondent

 

On Friday night, soon after the last of the Emvies 2015 awards was presented and dinner was served, three journalists left the venue and move to the cab stand, with one of them – Shibani Gharat of CNBC – being assaulted by a person who was at the venue and who hit one the journalist saying she had slapped him at the Emvies venue.

 

The matter has been widely posted, commented on and reported at least in one newspaper – Mumbai Mirror. Ad Club President Pratap Bose has been quoted in the report.

 

Deplorable. Sad. Scary.

 

One of the journalists who accompanied the journalist – Pritha Mitra Dasgupta – assaulted has now spewed on Bose.

 

We think things are going out of hand now, and it requires intervention of a senior industryperson. Former Ad Club president Shashi Sinha, who is out of the country, has promised action on his Facebook posts. Perhaps Dentsu Aegis chief Ashish Bhasin, who is among the agency biggies, who has expressed his support for the journalists, should step in.

 

Clearly, someone from Ad Club ought to have been more responsible, and swung into action. And not just because there were journalists involved, but it could have been anyone. I am told that one of the top officebearers was attending to four women who had passed out.  What about the others?

 

Fountainhead, the agency, which gave out the pass to the assailant, deserves a sack for this. Just a reprimand or the sacking of the employee who gave out the pass won’t do. Yes, Brian Tellis is a permanent fixture at all Ad Club awards and is good at his job, but they can keep him for the emceeing. His company needs to go.

 

Meanwhile, media entities sending out journalists for late-night assignments need to be alert on the safety of their employees. What’s happened to the threesome on Friday evening could happen to anyone.

 

For, as Prasad Sangameshwaran, the other journalist who was with Shibani and Pritha, commented to a post, “The most shocking part of this entire incident is the attitude of senior ad men and a large media agency, that was chasing us for good media coverage just a couple of hours before the incident. We always suspected that they are fair weather friends. Last night confirmed our suspicion. They chickened out and how!” Fair weather indeed. Am sure some of them will rush to Pritha Mitra Dasgupta for that exclusive in ET soon!

 

Read:

Shibani Gharat’s post on Facebook:

I was walking out of Ad Club’s Emvies event with two fellow journalists Pritha Mitra Dasgupta and Prasad Sangameshwaran when at the exit gate of Phoenix Mills a random guy came from behind and started stabbing and hitting me on my left shoulder with his arm. He claimed that I slapped him-which is untrue as I spent my entire evening with Prasad and Pritha at the event and hadn’t seen this person ever in my life. We called the Phoenix security officials to first take charge of the guy-who showed no sign of being sorry. Then we informed the police and the police arrived. The most shocking part about this whole incident was that the guy was present at the event. He had an official event pass. He is a peon at some garment company in bandra. What business does he have attending an ad industry event. So, when the police probed it was found out that the guy had been given a pass by a member of the event management company Fountainhead as the culprit insisted that he wanted to visit such an event. ‘MAJOR SECURITY LAPSE’. Why can’t the organisers have every member scanned who enters the event, just like any other event.

 

Now, if this is not enough when this incident happened two people present with me Pritha and Prasad tried reaching out to a few senior ad club committee members neither of them came forward to even come and see what has happened. No one accompanied us to the police station to lodge an FIR. They sent a few students who stay around lower parel to the police station. I am amazed by this gesture.

 

Now, I have finally filed an FIR against the person whom I absolutely don’t know from anywhere who just randomly came a hit me. Hope to get justice.

 

Pritha Mitra Dasgupta’s post on Brand Equity website: http://brandequity.economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/media/shock-and-horror-at-the-emvies-journalist-assaulted-by-drunken-goon-after-security-lapse/48934863

 

Part of Pritha Mitra Dasgupta’s post on Facebook:

@pratapbose: I did not call you to provide medical aid for Shibani. I called you because we were alone and helpless and didnt know what to do. I trusted you more and therefore I called you before calling the cops. I think 11.30 pm to 3 am was a really long time to turn around your car and come and stand by us. I want to know what would you have done if your daughter were in a similar situation? In the last couple of months me and Economic Times provided you relentless support to fight your cause. The least you could have done is show up. I am shocked and hurt beyond repair. This enquiry has actually opened a can of worms which we publish soon.

 

Prasad Sangameshwaran’s Facebook comment:

The most shocking part of this entire incident is the attitude of senior ad men and a large media agency, that was chasing us for good media coverage just a couple of hours before the incident. We always suspected that they are fair weather friends. Last night confirmed our suspicion. They chickened out and how!

 

Mumbai Mirror report:

http://www.mumbaimirror.com/mumbai/crime/Man-arrested-for-attacking-woman-scribe-at-ad-event/articleshow/48951630.cms

 

Kalyan Kar comment on the incident on BestMediaInfo:

http://www.bestmediainfo.com/2015/09/commentary-ad-clubs-emvies-night-of-shame-as-shibani-gharat-is-assaulted/

 

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