#KashmirIn2020 | Our top five stories on press freedom

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In Kashmir, press freedom touched new lows in 2020. More journalists were summoned, beaten up, intimidated, and jailed by the authorities as the state-imposed stricter laws to regulate the functioning of independent publications. Here are The Kashmir Walla’s best reads on deteriorating press freedom in the region: 

Media policy in Kashmir

Media policy “an Orwellian tool” to control Kashmir’s press

The media policy is being proposed at a time when the press across the world struggles with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Rayan Naqash

qazi shibli, kashmir, journalists, media,

“Ghosts haunted me… cell was a cage”: Kashmiri journalist’s 9-months in jail

I washed and re-washed the same t-shirt. By the time I got new ones, my t-shirt had 119 holes.  When I was released, I walked out of the jail in the same t-shirt. I wanted to tell everyone in the world what they did to me. It was a story of subjugation.

Yashraj Sharma

world press freedom day

Journalism under Big Brother’s jackboot: patrolling the internet to stem thought crimes

In Kashmir, the Indian establishment is curbing freedom of the press in the same breath as it vows to defend it. It is the only explanation for its priorities – interrogating journalists over what the police has slyly termed “fake news” and “glorification of terrorism” – amid a spreading pandemic.

Rayan Naqash

Aasif SUltan, Kashmir journalist aasif sultan, aasif sultan biography, aasif sultan life, kashmiri jounralist jail

“What if he is never released?”: Journalist’s two-year detention leaves family in disarray

Nothing can fill the void of Aasif Sultan’s absence. At nights, when his 2-year-old daughter would cry, Ms. Akhter wishes if there was someone to look after her; play with her; or just hold her in the arms. There isn’t and she is alone in this.

Yashraj Sharma

Media policy editorial

Revoke Orwellian media policy — let journalists in Kashmir do their job

A policy that makes censorship legal and journalism crime is not acceptable. Stenography is not journalism. Journalism is not a crime.

The Kashmir Walla Editorial Board

In 2020, The Kashmir Walla also launched a new project called – Free Speech Defence Collective, an initiative to promote and defend freedom of speech.

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