Valley journos protest police atrocities on colleagues
Valley journalists held a protest in Srinagar on Thursday to seek action against the police personnel involved in the thrashing of two photojournalists last Friday.india Updated: Aug 25, 2011 20:36 IST
Valley journalists held a protest in Srinagar on Thursday to seek action against the police personnel involved in the thrashing of two photojournalists last Friday.
"Journalists have been target for the last two decades in Kashmir. The police are now using unpleasant descriptions like 'parasites' and 'security forces' agents' openly against journalists, which is highly condemnable," said Altaf Hussain, a senior journalist and former head of the British Broadcasting Corporation in Kashmir.
Last Friday, an Al Jazeera photojournalist and another foreign photojournalist were thrashed by the police at Nowhatta. Another journalist alleged that the police made him undress before ruthlessly beating him. The police, according to a photojournalist, also decamped with Rs 50,000 from foreign journalist.
"It is the job of journalists to be at the spot. The perception of police officers that journalists fuel protests is ill-founded. I hope the police will allow us to work professionally. If this is a systematic target then the government should issue a formal statement banning media in Kashmir," said Hussain, while addressing local, national and international journalists assembled for the sit-in near Press Enclave.
Shujaat Bukhari, a senior journalist with The Hindu, sought action against the policemen. "Those involved in the thrashing of the journalists should be punished and transferred. It's unfortunate that journalists are not allowed to function professionally," said Bukhari.
Srinagar-based photojournalists' body has threatened to launch a stir in case the government fails to stop harassment of journalists and take concrete actions against the cops.
Meanwhile, director general of police Kuldeep Khuda has assured action in the incident. Khuda, who is outside the valley, is convening a meeting soon to look into the matter.