KEG, KCDS Condemn Mrs Baig’s threat to newspaper editor

SRINAGAR: Kashmir Editors Guild (KEG), has taken a strong exception to a threatening phone call made by an MP’s wife to Editor, Kashmir Monitor.

In a statement issued here today, a spokesman of KEG said that wife of a senior PDP leader and MP called Shamim Meraj and threatened to ‘skin and hang him.’ Pertinently, the lady in question was reacting to an editorial published by the newspaper.

While describing the lady’s phone call as uncalled for and unacceptable, the KEG spokesman said that any interference in the editorial policy of any newspaper by anyone, no matter how powerful he or she may be, will not be taken lying down.

A day after the threat, Kashmir Centre for Social and Development Studies (KCSDS) has condemned the violent behavior of the wife of a sitting MP against a budding journalist and editor of daily Kashmir Monitor Shamim Meraj.

In a statement, KCSDS has taken a strong exception to the life threatening call by the lady who holds no position but misuses the authority of her husband. KCSDS believes that such immature and violent behavior cannot be tolerated in the society as the same is akin to the free expression in our media culture and against all ethics and morality. Hailing the local media persons, KCSDS said that the honest reporting apart from bringing the views of public to the fore has been mission of local journalists despite all odds and their voice cannot be muzzled or silenced through ridiculous threats.

KCSDS praises the journalists who are making reasonable and professionally important reporting and assures them of full support of Kashmir civil society. KCSDS urges the state government to take cognizance of the life threatening calls to the journalist and book the accused at the earliest for her crime

The call by Mrs Beig was in reaction to an editorial comment in the newspaper in which his affluent praise to Prime Minister Narendra Modi was discussed. The newspaper reported that Safeena Baig threatened Shamim Meraj on Saturday saying, he will be “skinned alive and eliminated”.

Calling from Baig’s New Delhi Mobile number, the newspaper said, MP’s wife, sounding extremely agitated and upset, hurled volley of abuses at KM Editor before going on to say, “You don’t know who I am. I will come and skin you alive and then hang you. You are jealous of my husband. You don’t know who he is. I will come to your office and show you what I can do if you don’t apologise.”

“You think my husband wants to become the CM? If Baig sahib wanted he could have become the Chief Minister in 2006,” the newspaper quoted Mrs Baig saying in her 4-minute call. “You think he needs that. How can you write all this! I will expose you.”

Meraj said they have lodged a formal complaint against Safeena in police station Kothi Bagh.

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