Three terror-linked cases filed against arrested journalist: J&K police

Published on Feb 05, 2022 11:32 PM IST

A day after Kashmiri journalist Fahad Shah was arrested, police said three cases have been registered against him in the past four years on allegations of encouraging terrorism and spreading fake news

FILE- Fahad Shah, right, editor-in-chief of Kashmir Walla, works on his computer inside the newsroom at his office in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, Friday, Jan. 21, 2022. Police in Indian-controlled Kashmir have arrested Shah, a young journalist on accusations of publishing "anti-national content," police said, in a widening crackdown against media in the disputed region. (AP Photo/Dar Yasin, File) (AP)
FILE- Fahad Shah, right, editor-in-chief of Kashmir Walla, works on his computer inside the newsroom at his office in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, Friday, Jan. 21, 2022. Police in Indian-controlled Kashmir have arrested Shah, a young journalist on accusations of publishing "anti-national content," police said, in a widening crackdown against media in the disputed region. (AP Photo/Dar Yasin, File) (AP)
By, Srinagar

A day after Kashmiri journalist Fahad Shah was arrested, police said three cases have been registered against him in the past four years on allegations of encouraging terrorism and spreading fake news.

Shah runs a news portal and magazine called Kashmiri Walla. Police in Pulwama registered a case against him few days ago and he was detained on Friday.

“Fahad Shah is wanted in 3 cases for glorifying terrorism, spreading fake news & inciting general public for creating L&O situations: FIR No. 70/2020 of PS Safakadal Srinagar, FIR No. 06/2021 of PS Imamsahib, Shopian & currently has been arrested in FIR No. 19/2022 of PS Pulwama,” inspector general of police Vijay Kumar tweeted on Saturday.

The government must immediately and unconditionally release Shah, drop any investigation into his work, and cease detaining members of the press, demanded the Committee to Protect Journalists, an international non-profit.

“The arrest of Fahad Shah shows Jammu and Kashmir authorities’ utter disregard for press freedom and the fundamental right of journalists to report freely and safely,” Steven Butler, CPJ’s Asia programme coordinator in Washington DC, said in a statement.

The authorities must immediately release him, and all other journalists behind bars, Butler demanded.

Journalists are being arrested on frivolous charges, said Mohammad Yusuf Tarigami of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) and spokesperson of the People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration, a group of several political outfits in Kashmir.

“One more arrest of Kashmiri journalists on a frivolous basis reminds me of the quote of Rakesh Tikat who said well that ... “Qalm aur camera p bandook ka pehra hai”,” Tarigami tweeted.

People of Kashmir are suffering through bad times, said People’s Conference leader Sajjad Lone.

“Fahad Shah arrested. What times we are living in. Just a word caution for the administration. This is not the worst that we in Kashmir have seen,” Lone tweeted. “We have seen even worse in nineties. That didn’t change anything. This won’t change anything either. Take my humble word for it.”

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