Help us find our jailed editor, Kashmir news website appeals

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Qazi Shibli was detained on July 25, allegedly for leaking details about troop movements in Jammu and Kashmir ahead of the decision to scrap its special status.

News website The Kashmiriyat on Tuesday sought help to find its editor Qazi Shibli, who was arrested by the Jammu and Kashmir Police on July 25. Shibli was reportedly detained in connection with his tweets leaking details about impending troop movements in the state last month.

On July 27, the Centre had decided to deploy 100 additional companies of paramilitary forces in the state. Less than a week later, the government decided to deploy 25,000 more paramilitary personnel to Jammu and Kashmir, ahead of its move to scrap Jammu and Kashmir’s special status under Article 370 of the Indian Constitution.

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The Kashmiriyat said they had tried to find the reason for Shibli’s detention, but they were given no answer. The police reportedly told Shibli’s family that he would be released by August 5, but there has been no information about him yet. “We know that he has no money on him and he doesn’t have any clothes either,” the website wrote in its appeal. “They don’t even allow us to go inside the police station.”

Shibli’s brother Qazi Umair said he was told he was shifted to Agra police station. “Yesterday I made a call to the Agra police station where the person mentioned that he doesn’t have any information,” Umair said. “Really tensed and worried about the whereabouts and safety of my brother”.

The state has been under an unprecedented lockdown since August 5, when the central government decided to revoke its special status and split it into two union territories. Thousands of troops have been deployed to prevent violence and protests in the region and communication lines have been cut in most parts. The authorities have claimed that the restrictions would be eased gradually. However, protests in the Valley have made it difficult to do so.

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