The Editors Guild of India has called the action taken by law enforcement agencies against The Hindu journalist Peerzada Ashiq and freelance photographer Masrat Zahra as an “indirect way of intimidating journalists across the country.”
The Guild has demanded that the Union Territory administration of Jammu and Kashmir withdraw the charges against both Mr. Ashiq and Ms. Zahra forthwith.
Expressing shock at the FIR filed against Mr. Ashiq for a news story and slapping the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act against Ms. Zahra for social media posts, the Editors Guild, in a statement here, said, “Any recourse to such laws for merely publishing something in the mainstream or social media is a gross misuse of power. Its only purpose can be to strike terror into journalists.”
Mere social media posts of factual pictures can’t attract the toughest anti-terror laws passed for hardened terrorists.
“And in the case of The Hindu reporter, the correct course was to escalate the complaint to the newspaper’s editor,” the Guild said.
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