Kashmir Editors’ Guild (KEG) on Saturday announced that Jammu and Kashmir police’s press notes and advertisements would not be published until action is taken against policemen, who assaulted journalists two days ago in Srinagar. The journalists were attacked while covering a protest outside separatist Syed Ali Geelani’s residence. “Given the fact that the police have not even registered an FIR, for which the photographers have moved an application, the KEG decided that it will, in protest, not publish any press notes of the police or any advertisement from the police organisation till police chief does not apologise for the assault and act against the accused officials,” a KEG spokesman said.
In a statement, the KEG alleged that the police had attempted to run a vehicle over photographers and “made a serious bid on the life of AFP photographer Tawseef Mustafa by trying to suffocate him”. A video of a police officer grabbing Mustafa’s neck has gone viral on social media.
The KEG said that it has taken a strong note of “unwarranted police action” against the photographers. “(KEG) Members regretted recurrence of such assaults thus making discharging of professional duties of photographers very difficult,” the statement said. The US-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) has asked the police to discipline its officers. “Police in Jammu and Kashmir should protect journalists doing their jobs, not grab them by the throat,” CPJ Asia Program Coordinator Steven Butler said.