KPC, JKYSF denounce charges against woman journalist

Srinagar, April 20 (KMS): In occupied Kashmir, Indian police have booked a Kashmiri photojournalist on the charge of uploading anti-India posts on social media.

The police booked a noted female photojournalist Masarrat Zahra, whose work has been published by reputed news organisations as a freelance photojournalist, under draconian Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act for uploading anti-India posts.

“Yes, she has been booked for her Facebook posts that glorify militants. Her posts pose a threat to law and order and spread misinformation,” Superintendent of Police (SP) Cyber Cell Kashmir, Tahir Ashraf told media men in Srinagar.

Zahra, who has simply been identified as a Facebook user by the police, is a noted photo-journalist whose work has been published by Al-Jazeera, The Caravan, The Quint, TRT World and other reputed organisations in India and abroad.

The amended UAPA allows the authorities to proscribe individuals as terrorists and empowers more officers of the National Investigation Agency to probe cases. A person charged under the act can be jailed for up to seven years.

Meanwhile, the Kashmir Press Club in a statement while strongly reacting to the stringent charges against the woman journalist condemned the recent cases of harassment and summons to journalists by police in Kashmir. The statement said that journalism in Kashmir had never been an easy task, but challenges and hardships had multiplied for journalists since August 2019.

Jammu and Kashmir Youth Social Forum leader, Angath Singh in a statement also denounced the registration of the case against the photojournalist.

He said that Indian had lost the battle of democracy in occupied Kashmir.
In any civilized world the media is considered the fourth pillar of democracy but in Kashmir the said terminology doesn’t exist, he added.

There is no freedom of speech and opinion and reporting has become a crime in Kashmir, he added.

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