‘They beat me up by batons’: Kashmiri journalist assaulted by cops

By Ubair Ul Hameed

Srinagar : A journalist was allegedly assaulted by the Jammu and Kashmir police cops in South Kashmir’s Anantnag district on Saturday while he was on his way to home.

Akash Hassan, a freelance journalist, whose work as appeared in multiple international publications, tweeted that he was “beaten up by JKP (Jammu and Kashmir Police) cops at Sangam while I was on way home and they were cleaning traffic.”

 

“I was just beaten up by JKP cops at Sangam while I was on way home and they were cleaning traffic,” Akash said in the tweet.

“A sub inspector named Zahid and his one PSO came in front of my car and slapped and beat me up by batons—and the barrage of abuses,” the tweet added.

Meanwhile officials at the police post have denied the allegations and said that he was just asked to remain in single lane.

After the tweet went viral, police said that they have taken cognizance of the issue and circumstances that led to this were being looked into.

“Cognisance taken. Circumstances that led to this being looked into. During rush evening hours a loaded truck got stuck due to mechanical fault on Sangam bridge leading to heavy traffic jamming. Been working hard to clear it. Request all to cooperate with police & avoid confrontation,” Anantnag police tweeted.

Journalists in Kashmir were outraged by the assault and demanded that the police take action against the wrongdoing cops.

“This happens far too often here and without any consequences for the officials. Absolutely horrendous. I hope you are okay now,” wrote Adnan Bhat, a journalist expressing solidarity with Hassan.

Journalist Federation of Kashmir, a journalist body in the region, said that the attack on Hassan once again highlights the lack of accountability and reflects the ground reality in Kashmir. JFK demanded immediate action against those involved in the attack against Hassan.

“We reiterate our commitment to advocate press freedom and demand an immediate end to impunity for crimes committed against journalists,” JFK said in a tweet.

Former Chief Minister of the erstwhile state, Mehbooba Mufti, also condemned the assault on Hassan and wrote, “Unacceptable & disgraceful to see JKP officers assault journalists. They act with impunity knowing all too well that they will get away with it,”. Mufti also demanded action against the cops.

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