Srinagar: The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and its affiliate the Indian Journalists Union (IJU) on Monday condemned the alleged harassment of journalist Aqib Javed Hakim, and demanded that NIA refrain from misusing its authority to intimidate journalists.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, the IJU said that the NIA summons to Aqib Javed Hakim amounted to an attack on the freedom of the press and meant to intimidate journalists in Kashmir who were already working under difficult circumstances.
The IFJ said: “The IFJ condemns the NIA over its summoning of a journalist from Srinagar to New Delhi, India for an interview. The summoning is clearly an attempt to intimidate the journalist community of Jammu and Kashmir; and a gross misuse of the authority. The IFJ urges the concerned authorities of India to immediately allow Hakim to conduct his professional activities as a journalist and refrain from harassing journalists in future.”
“The IJU regrets that the Centre is using the NIA as a tool to harass the journalists in Kashmir and alienating them from the mainstream. Doing interviews is part of the journalists’ duties and not a national security threat,” IJU President SN Sihna said.
He urged Indian Home Minister Rajnath Singh to immediately intervene and stop harassment of the journalists in a volatile state.
The IFJ said that the government must immediately allow Hakim to conduct his professional activities as a journalist and refrain from harassing journalists in future.