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World

Police in IIOJK file FIR against media outlet for exposing Indian Army's pressure tactics

  • Shah says the case has been registered against media organisation for reporting story of Shopian school pressured by army to hold Republic Day function
  • The editor-in-chief of the magazine states they have ample evidence to prove their claim
Published January 31, 2021
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(Karachi) In yet another act of suppressing the rights of Kashmiris, police in Indian Illegally Occupied Kashmir (IIOJK) have registered a case against The Kashmir Walla for reporting a story of Shopian school which was pressured by Indian forces to hold Republic Day function.

Ina tweet by The Kashmir Walla Editor-in-Chief Fahad Shah, he stated: "An FIR has been filed against @tkwmag for reporting story of Shopian school pressured by army to hold republic day function."

He added, "@TheKashmiriyat reported same later and they are also in FIR. I as editor of @tkwmag stand by our reporting as we have ample evidence to prove so. Support."

On January 27, a video of India's Republic Day celebration at a school in the Shopian district appeared on social media. The school authorities said that they were pressurized by the Indian Army to lend them the school space.

The visuals of Jamia Siraj-ul-Uloom, a private school based in Shopian’s Imamsahib area, had emerged on social media in which men and young boys were seen holding the tri-colors as the Indian national anthem played in the background.

Speaking to Kashmir Walla, Jamia Siraj-ul-Uloom founder Mohammad Yusuf Mantoostated that the army’s 44 Rashtriya Rifles (RR) had been pressurising him to hold this function for the past one month.

He said, “Army insisted that we should do it, put our school’s banner in front, however, we did not agree. But they insisted that you have to do it. We were under pressure.”

He mentioned for a month he refused to hold the function at his school. “I told them you can do it and if you pressurise us, at most we will participate and sit in front of you,” he said. “They didn’t give us a reason but they were adamant to do this in the school, they had to involve our institution.”

Mantoo said that he had told the army that due to winter vacations, neither the students nor the staff is at the school and no one but four to five guards would be able to attend the function. “What can we say [to them]. The atmosphere that is here from top to down, we are helpless, what could we do?” he said.

He highlighted that a day before the function the army troops came with bulldozers and removed the snow. "Next morning, they assembled people from the neighbourhood, brought government employees and numberdars. They brought the flags and took them back after the function.”

Mantoo revealed that the young students, who stood with flags in hands aren’t the students of the school. “Army brought them from nearby areas," he stated.

Earlier, the Indian Army put baseless accusations that the teachers of Jamia Siraj-ul-Uloom had links with a banned militant outfit. However, the school authorities denied the allegations and said they were ready for any investigation.

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