Media bodies seek action against J&K MLA for threatening press
New Delhi, June 24: Media organisations on Sunday demanded strict action against Jammu and Kashmir BJP MLA Choudhary Lal Singh over his "threatening and intimidating" remarks directed at journalists in the Valley.
The Indian Women's Press Corps, Press Club of India, Press Association and the Federation of Press Clubs of India said in a statement that Singh, a former J&K Minister, had warned journalists at a press conference in Jammu to "draw a line".
He openly threatened them with consequences and warned them of a fate similar to that of Shujaat Bukhari, the Editor of Rising Kashmir who was shot dead less than a fortnight ago, the statement said.
Bukhari's assassination was condemned by people in general, besides a number of journalist organisations.
Condemning his remarks, the statement said that Singh also blamed Kashmir journalists for creating a "wrong atmosphere" and told them to control themselves.
Singh resigned from the state cabinet in April following his participation in a rally organised by the Hindu Ekta Manch in January in support of those accused of rape and murder of a young girl in Kathua.
"We demand that strict action be taken against the lawmaker for making threatening remarks hinting possible violence at journalists in the Valley," the statement said.
It said that such remarks were nothing short of criminal intimidation and a direct attack on the freedom of the press.
"They also serve to vitiate atmosphere and endanger the lives of journalists who work and live precariously in conflict situations," the statement read.