Srinagar: The final decision on the bail plea of photo journalist Kamran Yousuf which was supposed to be delivered today was deferred after the judge who was hearing the case went on a leave, reports said.
The court on Thursday last had reserved its order on the bail plea after his lawyer argued that there was no evidence against him and his arrest was made to “gag the media”.
Additional Sessions Judge Tarun Sherawat reserved the order for February 19 and then for February 21 after hearing arguments from Yousuf’s side and that of the National Investigation Agency (NIA), which said that the allegations leveled against Yousuf were serious in nature.
The advocate appearing for Kamran told the court that there was no evidence in the charge sheet against Kamran.
“There is nothing in the charge sheet against my client. It only claims that he was in contact with other journalists but does not show any conspiracy with the other co-accused in the case,” Advocate Warisha Farasat said.
Meanwhile, the Journalist bodies across the globe have condemned the arrest of Yousuf and asked the investigating agencies to release him immediately.
Kashmir Editors Guild (KEG), on Tuesday strongly reacted to the new definition of a journalist that was detailed in the charge sheet of incarcerated Kashmir photo-journalist Kamran Yousuf.
Reporters Without Borders (RSF), on Tuesday said that the authorities must free him at once and, above all, they need to understand that it is not the job of journalists to relay their propaganda.
The NIA had earlier alleged in court that Kamran was acting as a conduit for those involved in terror funding. NIA in its charge sheet had said that Kamran Yousuf was not a “real journalist” as he didn’t cover government developmental activities and statements of political parties, which “is a moral duty of a journalist”.
Meanwhile, Human Rights Watchdog in India Amnesty India has called upon the authorities to drop the charges against the photo journalist.
“Authorities should drop charges against journalist Kamran Yousuf and immediately release him,” Amnesty India said.