The Press Council of India (PCI) Thursday issued a notice to the director general of the National Investigation Agency (NIA), J&K chief secretary and the director general of police in the arrest of freelance Kashmiri photojournalist Kamran Yousuf.
Kamran, a 23-year-old native of Pulwama district, after being arrested by the NIA, was transferred to New Delhi for interrogation and then sent to custody for 10 days.
The notice was issued after the PCI took suo moto cognisance of Kamran's arrest. The premier media body gave the respondents two weeks' time for replying to the notice. The notice said Kamran's arrest is prima facie concerned with the freedom of press in the country.
"The Press Council of India has viewed the incident with concern and taken the suo moto cognisance of the matter under Regulation 13 of the Press Council (procedure for inquiry) Regulation, 1979," the notice said.
"A reply statement to this notice may please be filed within two weeks from the date of receipt of this letter to enable the further processing of the matter," it reads.
Kamran's arrest triggered a sharp reaction from the journalistic fraternity in the state.
The Kashmir Editors Guild has expressed serious concern over the detention of Kamran and demanded his release.
The Kashmir Young Journalists Association staged a sit-in at press enclave in Srinagar on September 11, demanding that the NIA should make public the charges against Kamran.
The Committee to Protect Journalists, an international group advocating for press freedom, also said on September 11 that "Indian authorities should immediately release Kamran Yousuf."