Al Jazeera taken off Air in Kashmir for Showing Wrong MAP
Indian authorities have taken Al Jazeera television news network off the air for five days citing what they call the repeated broadcast by the Qatar-based channel of “wrong” maps of the disputed Kashmir region.
“The ban has been imposed for five days and it was done on instructions of an inter-ministerial committee, who took cognizance of an incorrect map of India in which the channel showed parts of Kashmir in Pakistan and China,” an Indian official told AFP on condition of anonymity on Wednesday.
A blue screen was shown instead of Al Jazeera’s TV stream with a sign reading, “As instructed by the ministry of information and broadcasting, this channel will not be available.”
Al Jazeera India bureau chief Anmol Saxena said the channel has “made representations to the ministry” and hopes to have the order revoked.
Indian officials argue that Al Jazeera violated India’s broadcasting code in 2013 and 2014 over Kashmir maps, and even on some occasions, did not show the Lakshadweep and Andaman islands as parts of the Himalayan mountainous region.
The New Delhi government imposes tight restrictions on all printed maps of Kashmir, insisting they must show all of the area as being part of Indian territory.
Kashmir lies at the heart of more than 67 years of hostility between India and Pakistan. Both neighbors claim the region in full but have partial control over it.
The neighbors agreed on a ceasefire in 2003, and launched a peace process the following year. Since then, there have been sporadic clashes, with both sides accusing the other of violating the ceasefire.
Thousands of people have been killed in Kashmir unrest over the past two decades.
Pakistan holds one third of Kashmir with the remaining two thirds under India's control.
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