Sajad Gul

Sajad Gul, a Kashmiri trainee reporter for The Kashmir Walla, was arrested in January 2022.


The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the Hindu nationalist party led by current Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has been strategically targeting Indian journalists, specifically those critical of the Indian government, since it took power in 2014. According to The Wire, at least 194 journalists were targeted across the country in 2022 and by state agencies, non-state political actors, and armed opposition groups. The Indian state’s targeting of NewsClick has been deemed the “biggest crackdown on the Indian Press by the Indian State,” according to The Wire.

Activists and human rights advocates have expressed grave concerns over the immense crackdown on free speech in India, according to Wired. The Indian state has been silencing Kashmiri voices for decades and blocked the website of The Kashmir Walla, an independent news outlet based in Srinagar, from its country’s readers in August 2023.

Life and Activism

Sajad Gul, a trainee reporter for The Kashmir Walla, was arrested in January 2022 for allegedly sharing a “video of family members and relatives raising anti-India slogans after the killing of their kin, a militant, in a gunfight in Srinagar” on Twitter, according to Newslaundry. Fahad Shah, the editor-in-chief of The Kashmir Walla, spoke to The Wire and said the police filed an FIR against Gul immediately after he did a story for the publication on a demolition drive in February 2021. He was detained for 671 days before The Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh High Court reversed his detention.

Charges and Allegations

According to The Wire, Sajad Gul was charged under the Public Safety Act (PSA) and specifically under sections 120B (criminal conspiracy), 153B (imputations, assertions prejudicial to national integration) and 505B (fear or alarm to the public) of the Indian Penal Code.

Current Status

Granted bail

Last Update

According to Newslaundry, The Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh High Court reversed Sajad Gul’s detention on November 9, 2023, claiming that there was “no specific instance in any of the allegations levelled against him to show that he had been working against the national interests, so as to be prejudicial to the security of the state”.

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