Several regional dailies in Jammu and Kashmir published blank front pages in protest against the “unexplained denial of government advertisements to Greater Kashmir and Kashmir Reader” on Sunday.
Among the protesting papers that went blank with covers were Greater Kashmir, Kashmir Observer, Kashmir Reader, Kashmir Vision and The Kashmir Monitor.
Notably, a day after the Pulwama attack on 14 February 2019, the Jammu and Kashmir administration stopped advertisements to the two major dailies.
The Kashmir Editors’ Guild had earlier urged the Press Council of India and the Editors Guild to exercise their legal, ethical and professional mandate to intervene, News18 reported. The guild had said that the media in Kashmir is one of the most professional and has retained its neutrality even at the cost of lives.
Kashmir needs independent journalism…
…now, more than ever to give a voice to the voiceless. The press in Kashmir has operated under tremendous pressures of reporting from a conflict zone but since August 2019 we find ourselves in unchartered territory. The Kashmir Walla is among the oldest independent media outlets in Kashmir and has withstood successive lockdowns as well as attempts to suppress us, fighting back with authoritative ground reports based on facts.
We believe in making the powers that be accountable to their actions but to also hold the mirror to the society. We believe in covering all sides of the story and that empowerment in essence means the ability to make informed decisions. As such we have not allowed our journalism to be influenced by the pressures.
Despite the new and still unknown pressures, we are all the more committed to keep informing you of events and stories that matter. Our recent coverage of events has brought us an increased readership. However, the coronavirus pandemic and resultant economic crisis has affected our operational capabilities. We are facing an existential threat but only your support can help us withstand this and maintain our editorial independence.