Restoration of the basic fundamental rights of people of J&K and steps for resolution of the larger J&K issue are the topmost priorities now. The process has to start from going back to the August 5, 2019 position,  Mehbooba Mufti, former Chief Minister of J&K, said on Friday.

Speakingduring the unveiling of the redesigned Frontline, she said the Constitution of India was bulldozed on August 6, 2019, with the revocation of the special status and autonomy that was granted to the State. Calling it a “surgical strike” on a “Muslim majority state”, Mufti said nobody came to help the State and its people when they were being dishonoured.

“Kashmir is now managed through the RSS and security agencies. To restore the idea of India, you have to begin with the reinstatement of Jammu & Kashmir… elections need to take place,” she said during a panel discussion on ‘Kashmir- Changing the Discourse’.

Digital Integration

Speaking about changing the discourse,Malini Parthasarsthy, Chairperson, THG Publishing Private Ltd, said while the print market remains alive, tastes and preferences of readers and digital subscribers are changing as a generational shift occurs.

“Itis becoming increasingly evident as the digital revolution has taken place and users, especially of the younger generation prefer to read their news and entertainment content on their mobile phones or their tablets,” she said.

“Recognising this inevitability of the shift to the digital medium, The Hindu Group has already embarked on a journey of digital transformation. In other words, we are now enabled by state-of-the art technology to upload news and features online very speedily even before the content reaches the newsroom,” Parthasarathy said.

She said that the digital shift is already taking place in The Hindubusinessline and Sportstar.

Parthasarathy said Frontline, the fortnightly magazine, takes pride in its unflinching honesty and has a well-defined perspective which does not hesitate to highlight what it sees as the “rights” and the “wrongs” in developing situations.

‘Hold elections in Kashmir’

“People have to speak up (on Kashmir),” N Ram, Director, The Hindu Group, said, adding that “they (people of Kashmir) need the solidarity from rest of India”.

According to him, what happened in Kashmir was a “coup against the Constitution and secular structure of democracy”.And“Kashmir was robbed of its statehood” and what is happening there at present is “total tyranny”.

“The crackdown (on journalists and people of Kashmir) is unacceptable. Elections need to be held there and they are not to be rigged as has happened there previously,” Ram said.

Former MP Pawan K Varma said the “frozen peace there should be seen as a success” and the revocation of the special status has also caused a “true alienation in the people”.

“There needs to be a proper audit to see what the government had promised and what has actually happened there,” he said.

According to AS Dulat, former Research and Analysis Wing chief, Kashmir is not a law and order problem. But rather a political and emotive issue. It has to be resolved politically.

“A more pragmatic approach would be to move forward. Have elections. Article 370 is done and dusted. It is not going to come back,” he said.