J&K Parties Demand KPC Premises Be Restored To Journalists' Body

KO Photo By Abid Bhat

Srinagar- Political parties Tuesday asked the Jammu and Kashmir administration to restore the Kashmir Press Club premises to the journalists' body, and provide an enabling atmosphere for holding free and fair KPC elections.

On Monday. the J&K administration said the Kashmir Press Club has "ceased to exist", and took back the premises allotted to the largest journalists' body in the Valley following "dissensions" between two factions, one of which had tacit support from the government.

The National Conference deplores the closure of Kashmir Press club, party spokesman Imran Nabi Dar said Tuesday, asking the government to work for creating an "enabling environment" for the KPC to hold its elections in a free and fair manner.

The Jammu and Kashmir Pradesh Congress Committee (JKPCC) said the closure of Press Club was unacceptable and unfair.

A spokesman of the party said the JKPCC urged the administration to revisit the decision. "JKPCC unequivocally condemns the closure of Kashmir Press Club by the administration and sought revocation of the closure order in the larger interest of the press freedom."

He said the administration should help settle the issue by paving the way for early elections to the KPC.

While expressing resentment over the closure of Kashmir Press Club by the administration, CPI(M) Secretary Ghulam Nabi Malik said that the closing of the club is an assault on the rights of the people.

"This act is just a part of a policy which started with putting the registration of the club in abeyance. The administration has finally closed the club," Malik said.

"The closure of the Kashmir Press Club is part of the continuous process to throttle the press freedom and democracy in Kashmir. The press/media in Jammu and Kashmir is already working under immense stress and strain," he added.

Malik demanded immediate restoration of the status quo and providing atmosphere, where the KPC can conduct free and fair elections.

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