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Wednesday, July 6, 2022

Kashmiri PhD scholar arrested for ‘anti-India’ writing

The Jammu and Kashmir State Investigation Agency on Sunday arrested a PhD scholar of the University of Kashmir for a “highly provocative and seditious” article in an online magazine, an official said.

Abdul Aala Fazili was arrested from his Humhama residence as the SIA conducted searches at several locations in the city as part of its crackdown on militant and anti-India networks, the official said.

The SIA, assigned with the duty of investigation and prosecution of militant-related cases, carried out the searches in connection with an FIR registered under various sections of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and the IPC against Fazili and the editor and other associates of monthly digital magazine ‘The Kashmir Walla’, the official said.

The official said the searches were conducted at the office of ‘The Kashmir Walla’ in Rajbagh and at the residences of Fazili in Humhama and arrested editor Fahad Shah in Soura.

“The search teams have seized incriminating evidence, including material in computers, laptops, and other digital equipment,” the official said.

The official said Fazili’s article, titled ‘The shackles of slavery will break’, is “highly provocative, seditious and intended to create unrest in Jammu and Kashmir, and written with the purpose of abetting the youth to take the path of violence”. It also “promoted and propagated the false narrative, which is essential to sustain secessionist campaign aimed at breaking the territorial integrity of India.” “The article has used prescriptive language with instructional intent, encouraging secessionist elements to carry out militant activities,” the official said.

The official said the repeated reference to freedom and militant outfits’ rhetoric makes it amply clear that the article is not merely propaganda. “Rather, it is an articulation of Pakistan ISI and the vision of its sponsored secessionist networks.” The official said the central government paid Fazili Rs 30,000 per month for five years till March 2021 through the Maulana Azad National Fellowship so that he can sustain himself and complete his PhD in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences of the university.

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