Kashmir Times challenges media ban in Kashmir before SC
The Kashmir Times has filed a petition to challenge the ban on the media from reporting in the Supreme Court, through its executive editor, Anuradha Bhasin.
Prior to the recent bifurcation of the Jammu & Kashmir into two union territories and abrogation of the special status constitutionally granted to Kashmir, the central government had deployed additional troops to Kashmir, which is already ruled by AFSPA. The government had also issued restrictive orders to the public and also stopped telecommunication services, transport and other utilities. It threw the state into an aura of uncertainty due to the lack of information till the announcement was made.,
The foreign media have reported on the effect of the restrictions placed on the public freedom. Read a story by The CNN here.
A Network 18 report shows the pathetic state of affairs for reporters who are reporting out of Kashmir, including the fear of surveillance by the state.
The result has been an unprecedented, prolonged stoppage of media in Kashmir by local media outlets. There have also been accusations of bias against a section of the mainstream media in India which played a narrative of the central government. Though the foreign media has challenged that narrative, the Kashmir media is unable to report and for more than three weeks, newspapers have not been printed and websites have not been updated.
In the petition, Kashmir Times has asked the SC to direct the central government to relax the restrictions in order to ensure freedom of movement of journalists and media personnel in Kashmir and some districts of Jammu.