What Happened: Authorities have sealed the office of Jammu’s oldest English newspaper publisher, Kashmir Times. The paper’s executive editor Anuradha Bhasin took to twitter saying “Estates Deptt locked our office without any due process of cancellation & eviction”. She also said in a statement that no notice of cancellation or eviction was served against the paper and “nothing in writing” was given either.
Why it Happened: Bhasin claims it is a “vendetta” against her for speaking out against the Modi government and its atrocities and systematic suppression of Kashmiri voices. Bhasin and Kashmir Times have been vocally critical of Modi’s policies in regards to Kashmir, highlighting the communications blockage, changes in domiciles, human rights abuses and the notorious abrogation of Article 370.
Why it Matters: The action taken by the government is part of the effort to silence any protests voiced from Kashmir. Following the abrogation of Article 370 pertaining to Kashmir autonomy, the Indian government have tried their level best to suppress Kashmiri voices. After the revocation of the special status of the state in August of 2019, Mehbooba Mufti, the previous chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir was detained without any charges, alongside many other prominent Kashmiri politicians. Authorities have even gone to the extent of evicting Anuradha Bhasin from her flat in Jammu in attempts to dissuade her attempts to highlight issues in Kashmir. Pakistan, along with ally Turkey, have made it an imperative foreign policy move to raise awareness of Indian human rights violations at all global summits and delegations.