Days after trying to gag the media by cancelling curfew passes, the J&K authorities on Saturday registered a case against a national news channel for "instigating violence".
The cops in Pulwama, a town 35 km south of Srinagar, have charged New Delhi-based news channel News X and its Srinagar correspondent Suhail Bukhari with attempt to murder, rioting, endangering life or personal safety of others and other unlawful activities.
The crime? Wrongly reporting the killing of a person in police firing in the town on Saturday. "The news enraged locals and they attacked a police station, injuring 15 policemen," said Pulwama Superintendent of Police Kifayat Haider.
No other minister or senior government official was available for comment. No arrest warrant had been issued against Bukhari, who flew to Delhi on Saturday afternoon.
Speaking to HT before flying out of Srinagar, Bukhari said: "It was a human error. We took it off air within no time and even issued a written apology."
Several hundred journalists protested on the streets in Srinagar against the FIR and attempts to gag the press.
HT was the first to report on this gag attempt.