Indian journalist doused in petrol and set on fire for accusing local minister of corruption. Flickr

A journalist in India was reportedly set on fire after he published allegations against a local politician.

Jagendra Singh ran an online newspaper and had recently reported against Ram Murti Verma, a cabinet minister, in Indian northern state of Uttar Pradesh accusing him of corruption and illegally acquiring property and mining.

This horrific attack highlights the dangers that journalists can face in doing their jobs.
- Shemeer Babu, programme director, Amnesty International

Singh had petrol thrown all over him and was set on fire. He died of the burns, which covered 60 per cent of his body at a hospital in Lucknow on 9 June.

In a statement made before his death, Singh reportedly accused the minister and two police officers for the incident.

A spokesperson for police, however said: "There was a case against Jagendra Singh. We tried to arrest him but he committed suicide."

Singh's relatives insisted it was not a matter of suicide and accused a police officer of setting him on fire.

"The inspector and others barged into the room and poured petrol on him and set him ablaze," said Singh's wife, reported The Independent.

Singh's son, Raghvendra Singh, said his father has often been a target for writing about the illegal land-acquires of the minister.

"[They] barged into our house and questioned my father about the posts. They started beating him up," said Raghvendra, reported The Guardian.

Meanwhile, Verma and five others have been charged with the killing of the journalist.

No arrests have yet been made and the accused minister has released no comments either.

Amnesty International's programme director in India, Shemeer Babu, has called on a thorough investigation into the incident.

"This horrific attack highlights the dangers that journalists can face in doing their jobs."