Srinagar, Mar 14: National Conference (NC) on Monday said the findings of the fact finding committee (FFC) of the Press Council of India (PCI) on Press Freedom in Kashmir is a telling indictment of the way incumbent administration is handling press, saying the report has confirmed JKNC’s standpoint.
Appreciating the FFC’s findings, Party’s Chief Spokesperson Tanvir Sadiq said the report lays bare how the news media in the Jammu & Kashmir region, and especially in the Valley is slowly being choked mainly because of the extensive curbs imposed by the local administration.
“We have been registering our concern over the rising curbs on the freedom of press in Kashmir for all these years. The FCC’s findings have exposed the J&K administration’s handling of the press. Silencing voices critical of the administration describes the new normal in Jammu and Kashmir, particularly the valley. The gags have monopolized the flow of information in Jammu and Kashmir,” he said, as per a statement.
Tanvir said that enforcing curbs on the media and press fraternity, both implicitly and explicitly, has pushed various local dailies to stop their coverage of various issues of public importance in order to refrain from offending the authorities. “The press fraternity in Kashmir is at the receiving end due to the executive apathy and intrinsic pressure associated with reporting in a conflict situation. It is indeed a tight rope walk for our journalist friends,” he added.
The FFC has done a commendable job by showing a mirror to the government, he said adding, “We in our party hope that these findings will put liberal, and democratic forces across the country in the picture about the ground realities of J&K.”
He implored the PCI to mount pressure on the Government to release all confined journalists and work towards creating an enabling environment where press can work in a free and fair manner.