The Committee to Protect Journalists has released this year’s Impunity Index Report, Getting Away With Murder. The index is a measure of how many deaths of journalists go unpunished or unsolved in countries around the world. For the eighth year running, India is on that list.

The committee is an independent non-profit organisation based in the United States that promotes press freedom around the world. It has been releasing its annual Impunity Index since 2008.

The index, which ranks 14 countries this year, tallies the number of unsolved murders in a country in the last ten years with its current population size. India, with 11 journalist deaths in a population of 1.29 billion people, ranks at the bottom of the list, with a score of 0.008.

The point, however, is not the low score, but that India is on the list at all. Others on the list include Somalia, Iraq, Russia, Pakistan and Brazil.

As the report says, “The numbers show that the political will needed to prosecute those who silence journalists, many of whom investigate corruption or report critically on local leadership, is absent.”

India is one of only five healthy democracies with working justice systems on the list where killers have been allowed to get away with the deaths of reporters.

The Press Council of India has called for a blackout of newsrooms on November 2 in solidarity with these victims.

Why we’re still on the list

The committee maintains a larger database of unsolved journalists' murders that do not make it to the index ranking, including deaths that have not been proven to be linked to work. For the index, it considers only those cases where there have been no convictions. Partial convictions count in its larger database towards partial impunity.

The report counts only one person in 2015 as having been murdered beyond doubt in the course of his work. This is Jagendra Singh, a freelance journalist from Uttar Pradesh, whose gruesome killing in June shook the media establishment. In a statement from hospital, Singh named Sriprakash Rai, a policeman, as the man who had doused him with kerosene and set him alight. Singh died soon after.

But Singh was not the only journalist to die in 2015. The report lists two other murders, one each from Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra. The only reason the deaths of Akshay Singh and Sandeep Kothari have not been counted in the final list is that the motive for their murder has not yet been confirmed to be linked directly to their work as journalists.

In all, 37 journalists have died as a direct result of their work since 1992. All but one were men. The motives for the deaths of 22 others have not yet been confirmed. The Press Council of India says that there have been 80 unsolved murders in the last two decades.

Almost half of the 37 are thought to have been killed by political groups. Others were killed by criminals, government officials, local residents and paramilitary groups. Perhaps predictably, a third of them were covering politics and corruption.