DFP seeks end to rights violations, persecution of journalists in IoK

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Srinagar: Jammu Kashmir Democratic Freedom Party on Thursday took a strong exception to stepped-up human rights violations and vicious campaign of persecuting journalist by the Indian occupation forces in the occupied territory of Jammu and Kashmir.

The Party’s Central Executive Committee meeting while discussing the simmering situation in the region said that Indian occupation authorities have crossed all limits of barbarism thereby targeting the vulnerable segments of the society. The CEC meeting, which was specially addressed by the acting chairman Mehmood Ahmed Saghar denounced in strong terms the New Delhi’s vicious campaign of persecuting Kashmir’s top journalists who have used their pen and camera to depict and describe the Kashmiris’ painful stories and to tell them to the outer world by risking their own lives. “The journalists who have been reporting these stories for years have unfortunately themselves become a story now”, the meeting regrettably noted and said that journalism as a profession has become a biggest crime in Kashmir where reporters are being summoned to police stations and army camps to explain their stories to the men uniform. Condemning the FIRs filed against renowned photo journalist Masrat Zuhra, Gowhar Geelani, Peerzad Ashiq and others under the infamous UAPA the meeting said that series of events reflect a dangerous pattern of harassment, intimidation, threats and bullying into silence the media persons who have exposed Indian brutalities and the war crimes being committed by Indian forces.

Drawing parallels between AFSPA and the UAPA the meeting said this anti-Kashmir act was enforced in the territory to choke every voice of dissent in the valley. Denouncing massive crackdown against media the meeting said, “Amidst of corona-crises journalists in Kashmir are being frequently summoned by police, and they are being thrashed, humiliated and harassed by the authorities without any rhyme and reason”. Referring to the Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights the participants of the meeting said that Indian authorities’ attempt to curb the right to freedom of expression in Kashmir was a serious violation of the international law.

“As per the covenant everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media regardless of frontiers”, they said.

The meeting also deplored in strong terms the rising spade of state-sponsored violence ahead of the Holy Ramadan. Citing the fresh incidents of state-terrorism in south Kashmir’s Shopian and Kulgam district the DFP meeting sought international community’s intervention to help-stop bloodbath of innocent youth of Kashmir. Terming it as a willful attempt of genocide and ethnic cleansing on the part of government of India the DFP leaders’ huddle urged the world human rights organizations to redouble their efforts to expose India’s brutalities in Kashmir, which they said amounted to serious war crimes.