Srinagar: Kashmir Editors Guild (KEG) on Friday said that the government has stopped state government advertisements to two major daily newspapers – Greater Kashmir and Kashmir Reader.
Regretting the government move, KEG said that the decision has neither been conveyed formally nor was any reason detailed to the respective originations.
KEG in a statement said that in a detailed meeting they have discussed the issue and decided to “fight the deliberate strangulation and subversion” of the institution of media in the state.
“At a time when the democracy is in suspension, the KEG is seeking attention of the Press Council of India and the Editors Guild of India to exercise their legal, ethical and professional mandate to intervene in the issue and ensure that the media in one of the most sensitive states is not strangulated. The Guild decided to move to the Council and would also involve the Editors Guild of India,” KEG said.
The Guild reiterated the fact that media in Kashmir is one of the most professional media and it has retained its neutrality even at the cost of lives and will continue to do so.
“The professional capacities of Kashmir media have been acknowledged world over. The Press Council of India has also issued a detailed report in 2018 detailing the issues and challenges that the Kashmir media is facing. It also addressed certain misconceptions about the media in the report,” the statement further said.
KEG reiterated that the attempt at strangulating of the media is in continuation of what has happened in last more than three decades.
They said that Kashmir media lost more than 13 journalists and various printing presses were seized and countless cases were registered and are being continuously registered as part of the systemic but enigmatic media management in Jammu and Kashmir.
“Interestingly, the strangulation bid came at a time when the media in general and the Kashmir media in particular, is putting up a huge and costly battle with the social media set ups to ensure the truth is cleanly and clearly separated and reported from mass rumour mongering. Kashmir is quite prone to rumours, which routinely overtake facts as it entails costs and consequences,” KEG said.
They said that the government in this situation should have intervened and helped improve the quality of the reportage. Instead, they have intervened inversely.