Kashmir Editors Guild (KEG) regretted, yet again, that while it was expecting the lifting of the ban on government business to two major newspapers – The Greater Kashmir and Kashmir Reader, the government has added Kashmir Uzma to the list. The ban, as usual, is unexplained and implemented without conveying to the newspaper.
The ban, as we have conveyed earlier, is a continuation of the onslaught that the Kashmir media has been subjected to, since 1989 in particular. The onslaught has led to the untold miseries to the institution of media and the shaking of the faith in the institution of democracy.
KEG that met on Tuesday discussed the fresh ban order has reiterated its stand that the ban is not only strangulating the media but is also impacting the idea of democracy. Interestingly, the ban came in the midst of the electoral process that is governed by the Moral Code of Conduct. The Information Department has not conveyed the ban formally.
The Editors are at loss to understand the wisdom behind the undemocratic decision-making, especially at a time when the electioneering is in progress. The editors said that the media in Kashmir is one of the most professional media in this part of the world and will continue to report the happenings in the turmoil-hit state professionally, objectively and honestly.
The Editors also conveyed to the larger media outside Kashmir that they should take note of the happenings in Kashmir seriously because it is also part of their business and their mandate. The Guild has already approached the Press Council of India and will send yet another communication at the earliest.