Cyber Police summons Srinagar-based journalist Auqib Javeed

Journalist Auqib Javeed
Journalist Auqib Javeed

SRINAGAR — A Srinagar-based journalist was summoned by Cyber Police for his story, which was published in a national news portal a few days back.

Auqib Javeed, an accredited journalist said that on September 18 at around 5 PM, he received a call from the Cyber Police Station. “The caller told me to be present at the Cyber Police Station the next day regarding a story that I had written for Article 14. The summon was verbal as there was nothing in writing,” he said.

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He added that the next day, he along with his colleagues from Kashmir Press Club (KPC) visited Cyber Police Station where he met the officials who had called him.

The accredited journalist said that they went inside Cyber Police Station at 11:15 AM and were allowed to go at around 04:00 PM.

Meanwhile, a police statement issued here said that on 17-09-2020, it was reliably learnt that one story captioned “The Real Cyber Bully: Police in Kashmir Question Twitter Users” was published on “Article-14”, an online news portal.

“In the story, the writer depicted a misleading picture with incorrect detail. The headline and the picture with some of the content were factually incorrect, hence misleading. The writer published a picture of a building, showing it as Cyber Police Station Kashmir Zone, Srinagar, which is incorrect. The fact of the matter is that the Cyber Police Station has been notified as a Police Station in October 2019 and was established in the upper storey of the Police Station Shergari building,” Cyber Police said in a statement.

The said writer has misled the general public about the functioning of Cyber Police Station and its establishment, police said, adding that accordingly on 18-09-2020, the writer was called in the Cyber Police Station Kashmir in connection with clarification of facts mentioned in the article and on 19-09-2020, the said writer visited the Cyber Police Station Kashmir accompanied by some senior journalists from Kashmir Press Club.

“The writer admitted that the picture published in the article is incorrect and has also admitted that he has no knowledge about the functioning and establishment of Cyber Police Station Kashmir. Further, the writer also admitted that he has never visited Cyber Police Station and has no knowledge regarding establishment of Cyber Police Station Kashmir at Shergari Complex,” the statement said.

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It added, “The writer and other accompanying (senior journalists) regretted the incorrect detail and assured that the story will be tweaked accordingly. On this, the writer namely Auqib Javeed along with accompanying senior journalists of Kashmir Press Club asked to meet the SP Incharge Cyber Police Station Kashmir. Finally, the writer accompanying other senior journalists met the SP Incharge, Cyber Police Station and showed the tweaked story and regretted publishing incorrect/misleading content. Later, they left for their respective destinations.”

“The allegation of excesses by Police officials/officer, published subsequently by Article-14 and other social media handles are misleading and factually incorrect, hence refuted,” Cyber Police said.

KEG anguished over reported abuse of accredited journalist Auqib Javeed

Kashmir Editors Guild (KEG) has expressed anguish and pain over the reported abuse of journalist Auqib Javeed by the police, managing the Cyber Cell in Srinagar.

According to a statement issued here, KEG said that Auqib, an accredited journalist, had been summoned over a story that was published by an online news portal in Delhi. The Guild said though the responsibility of the report published rests mostly with the publisher, the raw deal that Auqib Javeed got post-summoning does not suit any decision-maker.

“Auqib, in his first hand account, published by the website has said that he was slapped and abused. He also said that on the basis of the phone call, from the Cyber Cell, the website editor did acknowledge certain issues with the report and rectified it right away. Even if there could have been issues with the report, the reporter and the website were morally bound to rectify it, if any,” the statement added.

KEG has maintained throughout that the reporters, per se, lack a direct stake holding in a happening beyond reporting it for the society. Reporters’ role and that of the larger media is mostly that of an unbiased postman. However, it is tragic that every time, there is an issue; it is the messenger that is under attack.

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Yet again, the KEG urged the authorities to avoid making media a casualty of a situation in which media lacks a role other than record-keeping.

“Kashmir media including the newspapers published in Jammu and Kashmir and the professionals reporting for diverse media within and outside the country are professional, objective and very well experienced. Making media a deliberate victim does not augur well for the larger society and does not suit the democratic polity either,” KEG added.

Kashmir Press Club denounces slapping of a journalist by police

The Kashmir Press Club condemns the behavior of the police towards a young journalist Aquib Javeed. He was summoned to the Cyber Police Station on Saturday in connection with a story he had written recently for a news portal.

As per his account, which has been published today, he was slapped by a ‘masked’ policeman. Aquib also mentions that he was abused during this time.

According to a statement issued here, the Club feels this behavior towards a journalist is highly condemnable. Hitting/slapping or abusing a journalist in connection with a story he or she has written cannot be accepted in any society and goes against the freedom of the press.

“We hope the higher ups in the police department thoroughly inquire into this matter. We also urge the LG of J&K to look into these issues of difficulties faced by the journalists while performing their professional duties in Kashmir valley,” the statement said.

It said, “Summons to reporters by the police for their stories has become a routine practice in Kashmir now. The club demands that an end to this practice.”

“The LG’s administration should work out a mechanism so that a conducive atmosphere is available for journalists to deliver their duties without fear and reprisals,” it added.

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