PDP protests against “sacking of employees, media gag”
Mehbooba Mufti writes to PCI, EGI; raises concern over ‘intimidation, snooping’ of journalists in Kashmir
SRINAGAR, Sep 27: Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Monday hit streets accusing the present dispensation at centre of committing ‘atrocities’ in Jammu and Kashmir.
Led by party general secretary, Ghulam Nabi Lone Hanjura, dozens of PDP workers and activists took out a protest rally from party headquarters here against “harassment of journalists, arbitrary termination of government employees, continuous detention of political prisoners and rising inflation”.
The protesters carried placards in their hands reading “stop harassing journalists, stop arbitrary arrests, reinstate Anganwadi workers, restore freedom of press and release political prisoners .”
Talking to the media on the occasion, PDP leader Ghulam Nabi Lone Hanjura said, the centre besides sacking government employees for no fault of theirs, enacts fresh laws in the erstwhile state on daily basis while journalists face constant threats and harassment.
He also said the rising inflation has broken the back of poor people in India including Jammu and Kashmir which the government keeps on ignoring ‘intentionally’.
Hanjura alleged that harassment of journalists has taken a huge toll on the media industry in Jammu and Kashmir as the government is trying to muzzle the press for its own interests.
The PDP leader who served as a Minister in PDP-BJP coalition asked the centre to change its approach towards the people of Jammu and Kashmir and reinstate all the sacked employees and Anganwadi workers besides releasing all political workers.
He also demanded that harassment of journalists be stopped at earliest and the media be allowed to work independently.
Meanwhile, President People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Mehbooba Mufti, on Monday wrote a letter to the Press Council of India and Editors Guild of India, pointing out the “intimidation, snooping and harassment of journalists in Kashmir.”
Mufti, in the letter stated that several raids were conducted by Jammu and Kashmir police at homes of several journalists in Kashmir earlier this month.
“Personal items such as electronic gadgets including phones & laptops were illegally seized along with ATM cards and passports of their spouses. This comes close on the heels of the harrowing experiences that the journalist community in Jammu and Kashmir has been subject to post the abrogation of Article 370 by the Indian government,” reads the letter.
“In the past two years, several journalists have been summoned, detained or booked by the police over various charges. In a recent report, two journalists were detained at the airport in Delhi, disallowing them from flying abroad,” reads the letter.
Besides the letter throws light upon the fact that 23 journalists have been put on ECL (Exit Control List).