New York: The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), a New York based non-profit organization working to promote press freedom and defend rights of a journalist, in a statement have demanded “Indian authorities to immediately release” photojournalist, Kamran Yousuf.
Kamran, a resident of Pulwama, and a photojournalist contributing extensively to Greater Kashmir newspaper, was arrested by India’s National Investigation Agency (NIA) on September 4. The agency arrested Yousuf on suspicions of stone-pelting but is yet to publicly charge him.
“Indian authorities should immediately release Kamran Yousuf, a freelance photojournalist who was working in the Jammu and Kashmir region and has been held without charge since September 4,” the Committee to Protect Journalists stated.
CPJ in its statement wrote that Yousuf “was a headache for the local police and politicians, reporting every small detail, and (he) put pressure on (local authorities),” quoting a report published in Scroll.
“Indian authorities must stop trying to crush the independent press in the Jammu and Kashmir region,” CPJ’s Deputy Executive Director Robert Mahoney said from New York.
“Authorities should immediately release Kamran Yousuf,” he added.
CPJ also contacted Arshad Kaloo, a senior editor at the Greater Kashmir, and NIA spokesperson, Ajay Mittal. However both refused to comment.
CPJ has documented incidents of attacks on journalists in Kashmir since 2000’s and always been vocal about protecting their rights.