Srinagar, November 16: A New York-based media watchdog, the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), has said that journalists in Jammu and Kashmir faced restrictions and attacks between October 8 and October 30, 2018.
The CPJ in a statement issued on its website said that on October 8, 2018, Indian forces’ personnel prevented photojournalists from covering the local bodies elections in Kupwara district. It said that the journalists were not even allowed to move freely and were told by cops that there was clear direction from the authorities not to allow media persons to cover the local bodies polls.
The CPJ said on October 11, Indian police stopped a dozen journalists from covering funeral prayers for PhD scholar, Dr Manan Wani, in Kupwara district. After three hours, the journalists were allowed to proceed to the location of the funeral.
It said police barred reporters from covering local bodies elections in certain polling stations in Srinagar even though they were carrying an authorization letter from the election commission of the territory.
It said two journalists, Fayaz Lolu and Deen Imran, working with Indian TV news channels Munsif and Aalmi Sahara were stopped from covering the elections and beaten by the paramilitary and police personnel in Islamabad town.
On October 17, the CPJ said, police beat up at least six journalists covering a military operation in Srinagar. It said on October 19, police tortured three journalists, Saqib Mugloo, Kaiser Andrab, and Burhan Butt outside their office and then detained them. Speaking to the CPJ, Mugloo said, “The police started beating me randomly and accused me of informing ‘stone pelters’ about police’s whereabouts.” He said they were taken to the police station even after showing their press cards.
The CPJ said that on October 30, 2018, the forces’ personnel shot a videographer working with Zee News, Aijaz Ahmed Dar, with pellets while he was covering a protest demonstration in Shopian district.