Journalist in North Kashmir Arrested For 'Anti-National' Activities

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Srinagar- A journalist was arrested from Bandipora district for allegedly engaging in activities "prejudicial to the sovereignty, integrity and unity of India", police here said on Saturday.

Sajad Ahmad Dar, who works for an online portal, was arrested two days ago, leading to criticism from several quarters.

"There is a different set of laws applicable to J&K vis a vis the rest of India. Radicalised groups openly calling for genocide of Muslims are roaming free while Kashmiri journalists shining a light on state-sponsored human rights violations are jailed. Laws too have been communalised," PDP president Mehbooba Mufti said in a tweet.

Dar is presently is on Police remand, a police spokesperson said.

He operated a Twitter account with the name Sajad Gull' and was always "propagating" against the government and uploading tweets not based on facts in order to provoke people against the government to spread animosity, the spokesperson said.

The journalist during an anti-encroachment drive carried out by the revenue department last year in his village had instigated locals against the drive, the spokesperson said.

The officials were restrained in discharging their legitimate official duties as result of his actions, the spokesperson added.

A case under sections 147, 447, 336, and 353 of the Indian Penal Code was registered against Dar charging him for rioting, criminal trespass, preventing officers to carry out their duty, and endangering people's lives.

The case is sub judice in the court of JMIC Sumbal, the spokesperson said.

Dar, according to police, was also involved in spreading "disinformation campaign through fake tweets/narratives" regarding recent anti-militancy operation in Gundjahangeer in which an alleged local militant Imtiyaz Ahmad was killed.

"In this regard, a case FIR No. 79/2021 U/S 120B, 153B, 505/IPC stands registered against him which is under investigation," he said.

Dar also allegedly uploaded objectionable videos with anti-national slogans raised by some women on the day most-wanted militant Saleem Parray was killed in Shalimar, Srinagar, the spokesperson added.

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