A release by AILAJ said that the arrest of journalist Irfan is a "continuation of the relentless assault on free press and the freedom of speech in Jammu and Kashmir"
Journalist Irfan Mehraj
All Indian Lawyers' Association for Justice on Tuesday demanded release of Kashmiri journalist Irfan Mehraj who was arrested by NIA on March 20 from Srinagar.
A release by AILAJ said that the arrest of journalist Irfan is a "continuation of the relentless assault on free press and the freedom of speech in Jammu and Kashmir."
The association further said that the Union government is on the "path of suppressing voices of truth and resistance through unconstitutional mechanisms." "We demand the immediate release of Irfan Mehraj," it added.
Irfan Mehraj -- founding editor of Wande Magazine, who also contributed to The Indian Express, Al Jazeera, Himal Southasian, DW and TRT World -- was arrested under various provisions of the Indian Penal Code, and the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. Irfan, also an editor of TwoCircles.net, was arrested in case no RC-37/2020/NIA/DLI, the same FIR under which human rights defender Khurram Parvez was arrested.
Also read: Amnesty International calls for immediate release of journalist Irfan Mehraj
According NIA’s statement, Irfan worked at Jammu and Kashmir Coalition of Civil Society (JKCCS) which was allegedly "funding terror activities”. He worked with the Kashmiri activist and human rights defender Khurram Parvez.
Earlier, Amnesty International called for immediate release of the journalist. Aakar Patel, chair of board at Amnesty International India, said that the arrest of Kashmiri journalist Irfan Mehraj under terror charges is a travesty and that the arrest is yet another instance of the long-drawn repression of human rights and the crackdown on media freedoms and civil society in the region of Jammu and Kashmir.