Srinagar—Panic has gripped the journalist community after Lashkar-e-Toiba and its offshoot `The Resistance Front’ (TRF) issued an online threat to reporters and media houses in the Valley
Soon after the threat was posted online, several journalists named in the hitlist resigned from local publications.
Police immediately swung into action and registered a case. Cops later conducted simultaneous raids at 12 locations including the residences of some journalists in Kashmir.
Police said during the investigation, each team comprising 4-5 members was led by an Inspector/SI rank officer monitored by the SDPO concerned. The raids were supervised by SP South City Srinagar Shri Lakshya Sharma-IPS and launched simultaneous searches at 12 locations across the valley including the houses of fugitives like Sajjad Gul, Mukhtar Baba, active terrorists of proscribed terror outfit LeT (TRF) and other suspects in Srinagar, Anantnag and Kulgam Districts.
The premises which were raided and searched belong to Mohammed Rafi at Nigeen, Khalid Gul at Anantnag, Rashid Maqbool at Lal Bazar, Momin Gulzar at Eidgah, Basit Dar at Kulgam, Sajjad Kralyari at Rainawari, Gowhar Geelani at Soura, Qazi Shibli at Anantnag, Sajjad Sheikh alias Sajjad Gul at HMT Srinagar, Mukhtar Baba at Nowgam, Waseem Khalid at Rawalpora and Adil Pandit at Khanyar Srinagar.
During the search, all the legal formalities were followed professionally, and consequent to the searches some suspects have been brought for examination and questioning. The seized materials by the respective search teams include mobiles, laptops, memory cards, pen drives & other digital devices, documents, bank papers, rubber stamps, passports, other suspect papers, cash, Saudi currency, etc.
The investigation in the instant case is in full swing and the general public is requested to bring any information that is relevant to this case to the notice of Srinagar Police.
Turkey-based operative Mukhtar Baba and six of his contacts in Jammu and Kashmir are suspected to be behind the threats, an intelligence dossier stated.
Meanwhile, the Editors Guild of India voiced “deep concern” over recent threats issued to journalists working in Kashmir by suspected militant organizations, and the subsequent resignation of five media persons from their respective media outlets.
“Journalists in Kashmir now find themselves in the firing line from both the state authorities as well as terrorists, in what is a throwback to the years of heightened militancy in the 1990s,” the Guild said in a statement.
“Once again media houses have been named by terror groups warning that those associated with well-known regional papers including Rising Kashmir and Greater Kashmir will be declared “traitors” and that “their timeline is sealed”,” it said.