#FreeKamran: Greater Kashmir Removes ‘GK’ From ‘Lensman’, Now He Becomes A ‘Stone-Pelter’?

    Greater Kashmir swung into action after With Kashmir did a story on September 7 regarding Kamran’s arrest. Read the story here.


    Photojournalist Kamran Yousuf was contributing photographs and videos to The Daily Greater Kashmir but after he was arrested by NIA on 5th September, there has been no word from GK on this issue.

    What the newspaper did the following day is just pathetic. The following news story was published on Page 03 of the newspaper which speaks volumes about GK’s concern for its contributing member.

    GK’s news story regarding Kamran Yousuf published on Page 03 of the newspaper The shame does not stop here. In fact, the newspaper even edited a previously published story which was initially titled as “Cops thrash GK lensman” but was later changed to “Cops thrash lensman in Pulwama”.

    While the news organisation was non-hesitant to use his work during the times when he reached encounter sites or covered the clashes between security forces and youth, they have preferred a radio silence on his detention.

    The following proof is clear to establish the fact that GK clearly disowned a member of its field staff who risk their lives to cover the conflict in Kashmir.

    The newspaper edited the title of a story on 06 September 2017. The story about Kamran was originally published on 04 March 2017 with the title “Cops thrash GK lensman”. The title now reads, “Cops thrash lensman in Pulwama”.

    Greater Kashmir Page 3. March 04, 2017

    The screenshot for this story when searched on Google clearly shows that the story was published on March 04, 2017 with the title suggesting that The Daily Greater Kashmir owns this lensman and condemns his beating by the security forces.

    Cops thrash GK lensman – Kamran Yousuf When we click on this search result and visit the page, we see a different headline altogether.

    Greater Kashmir removes ‘GK’ from ‘lensman’ in the title of this story.

    We land on a page that disowns the photojournalist! We read a story about the thrashing of a ‘freelance photojournalist!

    As of now, the link is being disabled and lands on a blank page.

    Link to original page 3 of Greater Kashmir e-paper from March 04, 2017

    Weblink to the story which leads to a blank page now.

    ****
    A protest demonstration was called to protest Yousuf’s detention but it was attended by a very few people at the Press Colony in Srinagar. Most of the protesters that showed up at the venue were his friends from his hometown.

    According to Times Of India, Kamran Yousuf “was known to be operating a WhatsApp Group from South Kashmir to orchestrate and spread violence across Kashmir valley.”

    TOI’s Pandora box of lies goes on, “Kamran studied up to class 11 and gave up studies to join ‘anti-India movement’ through newspapers and by using social media,” quoting ‘a police officer’.

    The absurd reason for Kamran “to join the anti-India movement” that TOI seems to suggest is that “Kamran is from a broken family and son of a single mother. His parents were divorced.”

    Kamran has been contributing photographs and videos for the last five years now. He is presently a stinger with Greater Kashmir and Gulistan News channel. He had even pasted GK logo on his laptop with the passion to work as a full-time photo-journalist with the newspaper.

    He says,“When I leave in the morning for doing my professional duties, I am not sure if I will return home safe in the evening,” in an article earlier story with this publication”.

    He has been one of the first photojournalists to cover funerals of militants in south Kashmir where other militants would show up. “Covering such a gathering is very tough. I reluctantly take pictures keeping my safety as the priority,” Kamran is quoted in the article.

    Kamran has been abused and beaten up many times by security forces while doing his job. There have been occasions where Kamran had also faced the ire of the protestors during his fieldwork.

    Despite all the hardships, Kamran continued to cover the clashes and subsequent violence from South Kashmir.

    Photograph by @Kamran-Yousuf…. A police vehicle moves on a road filled with stones after protests between security forces and protestors rock south Kashmir's Pulwama Town.

    A post shared by Kamran Yousuf (@kamran_yousf) on

    Police chasing a youth during clashes at Pulwama today. #war#photography#Kashmir#indiaoccupiedkashmir#risky#job

    A post shared by Kamran Yousuf (@kamran_yousf) on

    (The views expressed by the author are his own)

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