New Delhi: In the wake of reports that some
journalists covering protests were thrashed by security
personnel in Srinagar, Press Council Chairman Justice (retd)
Markandey Katju on Saturday wrote to Chief Minister Omar Adbullah
enquiring about the steps being taken to ensure that the media
can work effectively in Jammu and Kashmir.
It has been reported that "some journalists were beaten
up by CRPF personnel in J&K while covering protests in
Srinagar recently. It is also reported that photojournalists
and a video journalist were hospitalized," Katju wrote in his
letter to the Chief Minister.
"It is reported that Umer Mehraj, working as a video
journalist fo APTN and Yawar Kabli and Showkat Shafi, both freelance
photojournalists, were taken to SKIMS Hospital, after being
beaten up by CRPF personnel," he wrote in his letter.
Katju said if the reports were true, the incident was
"serious" and demanded that he be apprised of steps the state
government was taking to ensure that journalists could do
their job effectively.
"If these reports are true it is a serious matter
affecting the freedom of the media guaranteed by Article
19(1)(a) of the Constitution," Katju said in the letter.
"Please immediately give me your comments on these
reports and also what steps you have taken so that the media
is able to discharge its duties effectively," Katju said in