Athlete Social Media Broadcaster Arrested For Attempted Suicide  

SRINAGAR: The young karate athlete whose videos in which she claimed to have busted a drug mafia in Sopore district, following which she alleged harassment by some Army personnel has been arrested. She has been booked for attempting suicide, police sources said.

Nighat Bashir holding a poster during a protest at press enclave Srinagar. KL Image by Bilal Bahadur

While taking cognisance of her social media post, police said, in which she had written that she will be committing suicide, the local police have booked her under FIR No 153/2020 under sections of 309 IPC. Her father Bashir Ahmad Dar has also been booked under FIR No 154/2020 under sections 353, 505 and 109 of IPC.

On Monday, Nighat Bashir and her family including her father and mother were produced before a local court but nobody from their relative or friends had come to stay guarantee for their bail.

Last week Nighat Bashir, a national level karate player from Seelu Sopore, uploaded some videos on social media sites claiming that her brother was getting involved in drugs and she raised an alarm over the increasing mess of drug mafia in her hometown. She came to know about the drugs after she found her own brother getting involved in drugs. “I raised a voice against the drug mafia which also led to the arrest of one person. After that, the racket was busted by police in Sopore,” Nighat said. But following the arrests, she alleged that “the army raided the area and assaulted my cousins saying they were looking for my father.” She again uploaded a video showing how allegedly the forces had ransacked her home. She also complained of not feeling safe. “I appeal to the administration to provide protection to me and my family. We are facing trauma, and nobody is inquiring the matter. We want justice,” she demanded. But as of now, she is either the complainant or the accused in at least seven FIR registered with police station Sopore, police sources said.

Meanwhile when Hindustan Times reached out to the army and they denied the allegations. “No army personnel is involved in ransacking or damaging any civilian property. These allegations are baseless,” army spokesperson Rajesh Kalia has said. Sopore senior superintendent of police Javaid Iqbal has reportedly said that “An FIR was registered against a drug addict Man Palla and six others on the complaint of Nighat Bashir’s family after her brother had sold a mobile phone to Palla in lieu of drugs.” He has further said that “Nighat’s claims on social media that her cousins were beaten by the army and her house was cordoned off because she had raised a voice against drug peddlers were not true.” “The searches were of general nature in Seelu and it was a joint operation by the army and police. Her home didn’t come under the search area, but one of her cousins’ did. Also, her cousin has refuted her claims in a video saying that he was not beaten,” he said. “Her allegations against an army major are also not true,” Iqbal has said. “It seems she has some vested interest,” the Hindustan Times report said.

Interestingly, the family’s relatives and neighbours refused to talk on the issue. They also avoided standing guarantee to their bail in the courtroom.

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