By Syed Burhan Rizvi
Srinagar- A blood donation drive was held by journalists at the Kashmir Press Club on Tuesday to commemorate journalists who passed away in recent years.
In a display of unity, the commemoration was jointly organised by various journalist associations of Kashmir. A memorial service was also held simultaneously where journalists paid tributes to their colleagues.
The journalists remembered their colleagues, including Mudasir Ali, Akhter Rasool, Qasim Sajad, Shahid Bukhari, and Ghulam Nabi Shaida, all of whom passed away recently.
Speaking on the occasion Jehangir Ali, brother of late Mudasir and himself a journalist, said, “There is no process where journalists’ families get help if they lose their lives. The fraternity should also look into this issue as well."
He added, "There should be a mechanism or a body which would look into the issues of the journalists to which they often fall in."
Hakeem Irfan, Economic Times correspondent and member of Journalist Federation of Kashmir, said, “journalists like Mudasir upheld the basic principles of integrity and telling truth. We are duty bond to follow their principles.”
Riyaz Malik, president of the Urdu Journalists Association, said such commemorative events should be a regular feature. “We should also work to hold award ceremonies in the names of journalists, lectures and arrange funds too to help their families,” he said.
The event was moderated by veteran Journalist Jaleel Rathore of J&K Journalists Association (JAKJA).
Speaking on the occasion, Jalil said "this is for the first time that the media fraternity is coming together and we must continue with events like these which help in knowing each other better," he said.
Jalil hoped that such shows of solidarity would continue in the future.
Riyaz Masroor, correspondent with the BBC and president of JAKJA, said research showed nearly half of Kashmir suffers from anxiety. “Journalists being part of the society have also suffered tremendously in last three decades. It is important to come forward and help society in every possible way during these tough times”.
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