SRINAGAR – The Kashmir Press Club on Monday expressed concern over the alleged harassment of journalists in the valley and demanded that the government allow the media to function freely as guaranteed by the Constitution.
“The Kashmir Press Club demands Home Minister Amit Shah as well as the Jammu and Kashmir government to take note of the appalling conditions in which press in Kashmir is working since August 5 last year,” a spokesperson of the club said in a statement.
“As such, it is once again urged that the constitutionally guaranteed freedom of expression and speech is being respected in the region by allowing press and journalists to function freely,” he said.
He said the KPC took serious note of the continuous harassment of journalists in the valley, including an incident that allegedly occurred recently in Pulwama district.
“On Sunday night, a multimedia journalist Kamran Yousuf, working with the ‘Newsclick’, was picked up from his home by the police. Recalling the details, Kamran said that a police party led by DySP and SHO Pulwama entered his home around 11 pm and knocked on the door,” the spokesman said.
The spokesperson said that Yousuf alleged he was taken in a police vehicle to the office of DySP and questioned about a Twitter account operated by Kamran Manzoor.
The journalist claimed that they checked his phones and asked me about Kamran Manzoor as they suspected that he was operating the account.
The spokesperson cited the journalist as saying that as the police officers did not get anything objectionable from his phones, he was let go at around 1 am.
“The police’s nocturnal raid at the house of a journalist has once again highlighted the dangers faced by journalists in the valley,” the KPC spokesman said.