India: Police prevent journalists from attending press conference in Kashmir
|Publisher||Committee to Protect Journalists|
|Publication Date||17 March 2017|
|Cite as||Committee to Protect Journalists, India: Police prevent journalists from attending press conference in Kashmir, 17 March 2017, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/58f60594a.html [accessed 19 October 2017]|
|Disclaimer||This is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.|
Washington D.C., March 17, 2017 – Police in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir should allow journalists to work without harassment, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today, and should take disciplinary action against officers filmed attacking journalists yesterday.
In this still image created from a video, a police officer grabs AFP photographer Tauseef Mustafa by the throat on March 16, 2017, in Srinagar, India.
Tauseef Mustafa, a photographer for Agence France-Presse, Shuaib Masoodi, a photographer for the Indian Express, and Umar Sheikh, a videographer for the English-language news channel Times Now, were trying to cover a meeting of separatist leaders in Srinagar, the largest city in the state, when police assaulted them, according to media reports. One officer grabbed Mustafa, the AFP photographer, by the throat, video and photographs of the attack show. According to a report in the English-language daily newspaper Greater Kashmir, the officer also threatened to kill the photographer.
"Police in Jammu and Kashmir should protect journalists doing their jobs, not grab them by the throat," CPJ Asia Program Coordinator Steven Butler said. "The officers responsible for this attack should be disciplined to send a clear message that the police respect the freedom of the press."
The local director general of the police, GH Bhatt, told CPJ that police launched an investigation into the incident based on media reports, and that anyone found guilty would be disciplined. He said that police asked the journalists to lodge a formal complaint, but that they have not yet done so.
Local professional and political organizations condemned the attack on the press, according to statements published in news reports.