Srinagar, Sept 8: Police today raided the houses of four journalists who were later summoned to Police Station in Kashmirfight.wordpress.com blog case.
Police today raided the houses of four journalists – Shoukat Matta, Hilal Saqi, Shah Abbas and Azhar Qadri in Srinagar in the blog case. Matta is editor of a local Magazine Kashmir Narrator and other three are writing for international publications.
Shoukat Matta, Hilal Saqi and Shah Abbas were formerly associated with Greater Kashmir while Qadri was with The Tribune. Click here to watch video
Police seized documents and electronic devices, including cellphones and laptops, belonging to the journalists and their spouses during the morning raids which lasted for several hours.
These four journalists were summoned to Kothi Bagh Police Station after the raids where they were briefly questioned and detained the whole day.
The journalists were allowed to go home in the evening but were asked to report again to the police station next morning.
Inspector General of Police Kashmir, Vijay Kumar, told Excelsior that the homes of the four journos were raided after warrants were served to them.
He said that their names surfaced during the questioning of five persons who were arrested in the case in July this year. He added that raids were conducted after proper verification and technical evidence gathered by the Police on the leads provided by the arrested persons in Kashmirfight.wordpress.com blog case.
Five persons including Secretary Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC), Mohammad Akbar Sofi, were arrested by police in July this year for their alleged role in threatening social activists, political leaders, Government officers and journalists.
Those arrested beside Sofi included his son and daughter Nazish Yasrab Rehman and Tabish Akbar Rehman, Javed Khalid, fiancé of Sofi’s daughter and Rafiq Mukhdoomi, a student of Law at a private college in Srinagar.
Police started tracking Rafiq Mukhdoomi after his name surfaced during the investigation of a case (FIR No. 82/2020) registered in Police Station Kothi Bagh Srinagar last year.
This year in May another a case (FIR No. 41/2021 u/s 13 UA (P) Act, 506 IPS in Police Station Kothibagh) was registered after another threatening blog of Kashmirfight.wordpress.com surfaced on social media networks.
According to an official, the names of other arrested persons surfaced and police arrested them after getting technical evidence.
The raids on the homes of journos comes a day after a fresh blog appeared on Kashmirfight.wordpress.com yesterday in which editors of five newspapers including that of a leading English daily were threatened.
Police said that the names of journalist Shujaat Bukhari and Advocate Babar Qadri who were killed allegedly by militants had also appeared on the same blog before their killing.