Attack on press freedom – Daily Times | #cybersecurity | #cyberattack

Kashmiris are the victim of Indian oppression whereas criminal silence has been imposed on the world. In the last few years, such tragedies have taken place that even humanity is ashamed but the global conscience could not be awakened. Lockdown and curfew have been in effect in the Occupied Territories since August 2019. Telephones, the internet, and markets were closed for more than a year while curfew was imposed everywhere. Citizens were sobbing for basic amenities but no leniency was shown. Even during the global epidemic of Corona, Kashmiris continued to yearn for medicines and vaccines, but the Modi government’s indifference remained. There were a few vanity liters for millions of Kashmiri population. However, the brutality of the Modi government has not abated. India’s ruling fascist party BJP is conducting ethnic cleansing in occupied Kashmir. Muslim populations are being targeted specifically to eliminate the Muslim majority in the area. It is to be noted that now Occupied Kashmir is the only state where Muslims are still in the majority.

If one looks at the recent move by the fascist Modi government, the freedom of the press has been attacked, the Kashmir Press Club has been shut down. The management has taken the club into custody and locked the cross. Advertisements of three major Kashmiri newspapers have been blocked. Dozens of journalists have been harassed by Indian security forces in the last three years. Six journalists lost their lives in the line of duty while six media outlets were targeted. Additionally, Journalists of Kashmir are frequently penalized by state agencies and due to this abhorrent coercion, they have long contended with various threats in IIOJK and found themselves between warring sides.

India is ranked 142 as per World Press Freedom Index after it had consistently slid down from 133 in 2016.  India has been listed under countries considered “bad” for journalism and is among the most dangerous places in the world for journalists. Among India’s neighbors, Nepal is at 106, Sri Lanka at 127, and Myanmar, before the military coup, features at 140.  The only reason for categorizing India as “bad” for journalism and among dangerous countries for journalists is Bharatiya Janata Party supporters and the Hindutva ideology which created an environment of intimidation for journalists who are critical of the government by labeling them as “anti-national” or “anti-state”. Reporters Without Borders, which published its 2021 World Press Freedom Index said that journalists “are exposed to every kind of attack, including police violence against reporters, ambushes by political activists, and reprisals instigated by criminal groups or corrupt local officials.

Indians who espouse Hindutva, the ideology that gave rise to radical right-wing Hindu nationalism, are trying to purge all manifestations of ‘anti-national’ thought from the public debate. The coordinated hate campaigns waged on social networks against journalists who dare to speak or write about subjects that annoy Hindutva followers are terrifying and include calls for the journalists concerned to be murdered, says the report.

The report has also specifically touched upon how the Indian government 2020 took advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic to muzzle press freedom. It has also noted that the situation in Kashmir is still very worrying, as journalists continued to be harassed by police and paramilitary forces, which it says are due to “utterly Orwellian content regulations.

According to Columbia Journalism Review Magazine, Indian government asked Twitter to remove nearly 10,000 tweets in 2020 as compared to 1200 in the previous which proves the Indian government is controlling the media in India and particularly in IIoJK.

Currently, the situation in Occupied Kashmir is dire. There is no question of oppressed Kashmiris, no hearing anywhere. This series of atrocities have been going on since 1947. Kashmiris are being punished only because they love Pakistan. The flag of Pakistan is flying in their every sorrow and joy. Now the world has to give Kashmiris their due. The promise of the referendum has to be implemented.

India is currently pursuing a nefarious plan to change the proportion of the population in occupied Kashmir. Kashmir domiciles are being issued to non-Kashmiris under the guise of controversial new citizenship laws. Changing the demographics of the disputed area is a clear violation of Article 49 of the Geneva Conventions. The imposition of curfew in the Occupied Territories, shutting down internet, phone, cable, and other means of communication is against human rights. At the same time, extrajudicial killings, kidnappings and murders of young people, abuse of girls, and violence against the elderly are tantamount to blackening the face of Indian democracy. India claims to be a secular democracy when in fact it is a state propagating Hindutva and extremist ideologies where a systematic genocide of minorities and opponents is being carried out.

Can the world just pretend that nothing is happening? Dr. Gregory Stanton says this is what happened in Rwanda in 1989. The genocide that started, and the hate speech that took place, were all early signs, and as we know, in 1994, 800,000 Tutsis and Rwandans were killed. There is bloodshed in Kashmir and Indian intentions and actions clearly reflect the Hindutva ideology. It is the responsibility of every country that believes in peace and humanity to establish a united and cohesive front to prevent this humanitarian crisis from escalating.

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