Senior journalist, editor and activist Gauri Lankesh, 55, was shot dead by unidentified assailants at the entrance of her home in Bengaluru West on Tuesday evening. Four bullets were pumped into the editor of the Kannada weekly Lankesh Patrike at her doorstep after she had stepped out of her car and opened the gates to her home which lay in darkness at around 8 pm.
Neighbours came out of a flat opposite the home where the journalist lived alone on what they thought were sounds of firecrackers and found Gauri lying in a pool of blood on her porch barely a metre away from the locked verandah to her home. “Normally, she works late hours because she is a journalist. Today she seemed to have returned home earlier than usual,’’ a neighbour said. The assailants were either following Lankesh on her way back home from work or were waiting in the neighborhood for her arrival, police said.
Police are hoping that CCTV footage from cameras Gauri Lankesh had put up at her home — at the insistence of friends — may yield some clues on the identities of the killers. “She has faced a lot of threats. If you see her social media profile, there are constant threats from right wing forces whom she strongly opposed all her life. She was reluctant and did not care too much for her personal safety. There were also some incidents of theft at the home a while ago so we forced her to set up some security cameras and we are hoping that it will yield some results because they were on when the incident occurred,’’ Shivasundar said.