Kashmiri photojournalist booked under UAPA for ‘anti national’ posts

Mashrat Zahra is the second journalist in Kashmir who has been booked under the UAPA Act. Earlier, Asif Sultan, a Srinagar based journalist was booked under the act.

UAPA
Police and security personnel who have been on the frontline of the battle against COVID-19 have also been at the receiving end of attacks by public while enforcing social distancing and lockdown. Photo for representative purpose only: PTI

The Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) police have invoked an Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act against a female photojournalist in Kashmir, for allegedly writing ‘anti-national posts’ on social media. A recent statement issued by the J&K Police stated that they have registered a case against Masrat Zahra under section 13 of the UAPA and 505 of the IPC in the Cyber Police Station of the Kashmir Zone.

26-year-old Mashrat Zahra is a freelance photojournalist and is contributing to several international news organisations. She has been published in Caravan, Al Jazeera, Washington Post and other such publications.

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According to the statement by the J&K Police, the Cyber Police Station of Kashmir Zone received inputs through reliable sources that a Facebook user named ‘Mashrat Zahra’ uploaded anti-national posts with a criminal intention, The J&K Police further stated that she is believed to have uploaded photographs which can provoke people to disturb law and order.

Mashrat Zahra is the second journalist in Kashmir who has been booked under the UAPA Act. Earlier, Asif Sultan, a Srinagar-based journalist, was booked under the act for allegedly giving information and logistical support to a banned militant group. He is still in detention.

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