• Thursday, Dec 09, 2021
  • Last Update : 09:48 am

Indian police clamp curbs on media coverage of Kashmir gunbattles

  • Published at 08:23 pm April 9th, 2021
INDIA-PAKISTAN-KASHMIR-UNREST
File photo: Security personnel stand guard as they block a road during a lockdown at Maisuma locality of Srinagar on September 27,2019 AFP

Journalists said the new rules were meant to coerce them into not reporting

Police in the Himalayan region of Kashmir have asked journalists to refrain from live coverage of gun battles with militants fighting Indian rule in the territory or protests, calling such reports a provocation amounting to interference in their duties.

India has deployed tens of thousands of police and soldiers to keep the peace in the disputed Muslim-majority region after revoking its constitutional autonomy in 2019 to weld the region more tightly to the country.

In an order this week, the police chief in the Kashmir Valley set out new guidelines for journalists covering the insurgency, in which militant attacks have targeted security forces.

"No operational content should be carried which is likely to incite violence or contains anything against maintenance of law and order, or which promotes anti-national sentiment," police chief Vijay Kumar said.

Media were advised to stay away from the site of gunbattles or situations that shaped as a challenge to law and order, and not engage in live coverage, he added.

Kumar said journalists' right to freedom of speech and expression was subject to reasonable curbs, so as not to endanger the lives of others or compromise national security.

"Do not interfere in the professional and bonafide duty of police and security forces at encounter sites," he said.

More than 50,000 people have died in the revolt that erupted in 1989, government figures show. Human rights and separatists put the toll at double.

In the past, police have said the presence of television cameras and journalists at trouble spots in Kashmir often encouraged people to come out in the streets and break the law by throwing stones.

But journalists said the new rules were meant to coerce them into not reporting.

"Press freedom is the cornerstone of a democracy and any attack on it undermines the democratic setup of which media is the fourth pillar," the Kashmir Press Club said in a statement.

India and neighbouring Pakistan have fought two wars over Kashmir. Both control parts of the region but claim all of it.

52
Facebook 50
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail