A journalist charged in Kashmir for 'anti-national' social media posts

Police in IOK have booked a female photojournalist under the stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) for enjoying "anti-national" via web-based networking media.

A journalist charged in Kashmir for 'anti-national' social media posts

A journalist charged in Kashmir for 'anti-national' social media posts

Police in IOK have booked a female photojournalist under the stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) for enjoying "anti-national" via web-based networking media.

Masrat Zahra, a 26-year-old photojournalist from the area's fundamental city of Srinagar, is blamed for "transferring anti-national posts [on Facebook] with criminal aims to incite the adolescent".

An announcement by Srinagar's Cyber Police Station on Saturday said it got data through "solid sources that one Facebook client to be specific 'Masrat Zahra' is transferring against national posts with criminal expectation".

"The Facebook client is additionally accepted to transfer photos which can incite general society to upset peace. The client is likewise transferring presents that equivalent on commend the counter national exercises and gouge the picture of law upholding offices other than causing irritation against the nation," it said.

Police said a first data report (FIR) was documented on Saturday and an examination is on. She has been brought before the police on Tuesday.

The UAPA permits the legislature to prohibit people as " terrorists" and engages the government National Investigation Agency to test such cases.

An individual anti under the law can be imprisoned for as long as seven years.

 

 

 

 

Zahra on Monday told Al Jazeera over the telephone that the police and government are trying to "muzzle the voices of journalists in Kashmir".

"Police has nowhere mentioned that I am a journalist. They have said that I am a Facebook user," she said.

Zahra said she had been charged for posting her already-published works over the years, calling the allegations "shocking".

"I have been sharing my archival images which have already been published in different Indian and international organisations on social media for which I'm being booked," she said.

Zahra's has worked in a few productions including The Washington Post, The New Humanitarian, TRT World, Al Jazeera, The Caravan and others.

 

 

“Stiflers against media”

 

In the interim, columnists from the locale have responded firmly to the charges against Zahra.

In an announcement discharged on Monday, the Kashmir Press Club denounced the charges against her and different columnists from the locale, and requested mediation by India's Home Minister Amit Shah.

"It is sad that when the world is in a hold of pandemic and when we have to stand together to battle the COVID-19, police has begun recording bodies of evidence against columnists and bugging them," it said.

"This is unsatisfactory for writers of Kashmir who are well inside their privileges to look for opportunity of articulation and discourse as ensured under the constitution like different pieces of the nation."

Kashmiri writer Gowhar Geelani told Al Jazeera that "summoning stringent arrangements of a draconian law" against Zahra "says a lot about the muffles against media to quiet columnists, to control the stories by utilization of power, and to contain the Kashmir story with wilderness".

Muzamil Jaleel, representative editorial manager of New Delhi-based The Indian Express paper, tweeted that Zahra has "sincerely recounted accounts of Kashmir in a four-year vocation".

"Conjuring UAPA is silly. In solidarity with our partner, we request FIR pulled back. News coverage isn't wrongdoing. Terrorizing/control won't quiet Kashmir's writers," he posted