Journalists working in difficult situation in Kashmir, 10 killed, several injured since 1989: Report

Srinagar, May 04 : Kashmir is one of the most dangerous places of the world where people associated with the press and media are carrying out their professional duties in the most difficult situation.
On the occasion of the World Press Freedom Day, observed on May 03, ten journalists have been confirmed as being killed while performing their duties during Kashmiris’ ongoing liberation struggle since 1989. They included Shabbir Ahmad Dar, Mushtaq Ali, Ghulam Muhammad Lone, Ghulam Rasool Azad, Muhammad Shaban Wakeel, Pervez Muhammad Sultan, Mushtaq Ahmad and a woman scribe, Aasia Jeelani.
The report said that in the occupied territory, almost routinely, the journalists face manhandling, abductions, murder attempts and death threats by Indian troops and all this has made their everyday work extremely difficult. It revealed that Kashmiri journalists and many other scribes while performing their professional duties were roughed up, injured and detained by the troops on fake charges in Kashmir, reports KMS.
Indian troops and police personnel have subjected scores of journalists to torture during anti-India and pro-liberation demonstrations in the past two years alone. The police even assaulted, abused and harassed video and photojournalists, while they were covering anti-India protests in Hyderpora area of Srinagar.
“We were doing our professional duty but policemen misbehaved with us as we were criminals,” Zubair Dar, who works with Press TV as video journalist said. “There were senior journalists as well. They too were abused by police,” he added.
Another photo-journalist, Syed Shahriyar, said that while the cops chased the scribes, senior officers were watching like mute spectators. He said that the policemen could have roughed them up had the locals not given them shelter.
Over a dozen photojournalists and videographers were covering clashes between protesters and police near Jamia Masjid Hyderpora, when cops abused and assaulted them, eyewitnesses said.
Earlier on April 24, Farooq Javed Khan and Javed Dar, both photojournalists, were assaulted by the police in Kulgam district when they were covering the so-called polls. The cops had also damaged the car in which the two photojournalists were traveling.
It is to mention here that besides manhandling and humiliation, journalists are forced to move boulders on a road despite curfew pass. Many are being stopped from covering the spots of action. Many photojournalists are not allowed to move around.
Meanwhile,  India has been ranked 136 among 180 countries worldwide in terms of press freedom in 2015 and stands at 9th position according to the number of journalists killed Since 1992.
As per data released by Reporters Without Borders (RWB), a non-profit organisation that tracks attacks on press freedom, India’s ranking on the World Press Freedom Index has not improved over the years. It has always scored a three-digit ranking since its inception.
The attacks on media last year, according to RWB, were identified as the major issues for India’s low score.
Among the attacks on media, which the organization cited as a reference included the ban on Al-Jazeera by the Indian government for displaying maps showing Jammu and Kashmir as a disputed territory and attacks on journalists in Kashmir during the coverage of the 2014 parliamentary election.
The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), an independent non-profit organisation that promotes press freedom worldwide, has ranked every country according to the number of journalists killed in the line of duty till May 2015. CPJ has been publishing the list since 1992.