Indian police arrest journalist for publishing ‘anti-national content’

Kashmir and India police on Friday arrested a journalist for publishing “anti-national content”. The Associated Press reports.

Police said they found Fahad Shah, editor of the Kashmir Walla news portal, on Facebook, where his work was identified as anti-national and posted with “criminal intent”.

Kashmir Walla media covered a January 30 firefight between civilian rebels and Indian troops in Pulwama, presenting the story from a civilian and military perspective.

A Kashmiri rebel commander, a Pakistani, a third militant and a teenager were killed in the incident.

Police described the teenager as a “hybrid” activist, a term that refers to a so-called activist who is a civilian with no criminal record.

Kashmir Walla released videos of the teenager’s family disagreeing with police, as well as contradicting previous statements.

The content could “incite the public to disturb law and order”, police said, adding that it amounted to “glorifying terrorist activities”.

Shah was arrested under anti-terrorism and sedition laws and faces up to seven years in prison.

Police have interrogated Kashmir Walla journalists, including Shah, on several occasions in recent years as part of a broader crackdown on press freedom in the country.

Police tweeted on Saturday that Shah was wanted for “glorifying terrorism, spreading false news and inciting the general public to create L&O (law and order) situations”.

About Florence M. Sorensen

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