Stop harassing journalists in the name of national security: Editors Guild on Kashmiri scribe’s arrest

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The Kashmir Walla editor Fahad Shah

By Muslim Mirror Staff

Editors Guild of India (EGI) have condemned harassment of journalists in the name of “national security” after the arrest of The Kashmir Walla editor Fahad Shah in Indian-administered Kashmir.

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“The space for media freedom has progressively eroded in Kashmir,” the Guild added in a statement, urging the state administration to respect democratic values.

It noted that Shah was earlier questioned for four days over his reporting on “a deadly police raid” in Pulwama in late January that left four people dead.

Days before his arrest, The Kashmir Walla had published a news report, where a family was quoted as saying that their “innocent” son was killed by security forces during an encounter in Kashmir’s Pulwama district. However, the police said he was a “hybrid terrorists” and was killed along with other militants.

The EGI further criticised authorities and security forces for the arrest of another journalist, Sajad Gul and for abetting some journalists in a coup of the Kashmir Press Club management, which led to the shutting down of the premises.

It called on security forces to immediately release Fahad Shah and Sajad Gul and ensure that FIRs under harsh penal laws, intimidatory questioning and wrongful detainment are not used as tools for “suppressing journalists’ rights”.

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