The police along with other security forces thrashed and abused around a dozen journalists and photographers at the gunfight site in Fateh Kadal area of Srinagar while performing their duties. A gunfight had broken out on Wednesday morning at the Fateh Kadal area of Srinagar where two local militants, a civilian and a policeman were killed.
As per the journalists who were abused by the police, they had followed the orders of police and was well within the line that the police had drawn for them. “Men from the fire and emergency services were dousing the fire. However, the masked policemen started beating and abused us for doing our professional duty.” the reporters said.
According to Arshid Hussain, who works for ABP news channel, “We were performing our duties when forces started hurling abuses on us. An officer of SP rank along with other forces manhandled us and even fired pellets to scare us.” “It was shocking to see a senior officer trying to choke neck of a photojournalist,” he added. Meanwhile, The Kashmir Press Club (KPC) have condemned the thrashing of journalists by government forces in Fateh Kadal.
According to the statement issued by KPC, they expressed shock over this behaviour by the forces and hoped the state administration would take a note of this and act. Besides that, the Jammu and Kashmir Editors Forum (JKEF) also condemned forces’ action on reporters, video journalists and photographers. According to the spokesman of JKEF, shooting journalists in order to scare them was against the professionalism as well as an act of cowardice. Meanwhile, the JKEF spokesperson urged the government to ensure safety and protection of media persons working in Kashmir.
Meanwhile, Kashmir Press Photographers Association (KPPA) and Kashmir Journalist Association (KJA), also condemned the police brutality on journalist and photographers. In a statement both the organizations blamed the police and other government forces for harassing and assaulting journalists.
Meanwhile, the Jammu and Kashmir National conference has condemned the thrashing of journalists by security forces at the gun-fight site in the Fateh Kadal locality of Srinagar. In a statement issued from the party headquarters here at Nawa -e -Subhu Srinagar, Party Provincial Spokesperson Imran Nabi Dar condemned the forces and said that the Kashmir press fraternity had suffered immensely.