ST turns 25, decodes bold journalism
From the desk of Editor-in-Chief
For many, it is just the other day when this part of the country woke up to a new dawn of objective, but more importantly, bold journalism…it is because boldness became a new norm with every next day unfolding a new sensational expose, causing tremors among wrong doers. But it is not just the other day; it is an odyssey of many many years. STATE TIMES has turned 25 but still it looks the other day though it is quarter of a century.
In these eventful twenty five years, the bold voice of Jammu marked the end of the journalism of blackmail with some unscrupulous in the fraternity, thriving on unethical practices, painting a dark picture of the fourth pillar. Obviously, this shattered the confidence of the people, who were craving for credible news besides free and fearless analysis. This is when the STATE TIMES chipped in, this day in 1995, and went whole hog to expose the scammers and fraudsters. Our dedicated teams of reporters kept digging stories based on truth. The motivation remained… “Somebody somewhere is hiding something, go and find out”. The teams of enthusiastic reporters remained always on tenterhooks to find out the truth. The readers still remember the unveiling of ‘nursing scam’ that virtually rocked Jammu in particular and the erstwhile state in general. Undeterred by the mafias, we exposed one after another scam—the menace of corruption and the other ills inflicting the society. Your paper survived the onslaught of both adversaries in the field and those getting exposed for their acts of omission and commission. With a sense of responsibility we say that none of our staffers has ever sold his or her conscience for a single penny. We wish anybody to disprove our claim. It has been our humble challenge all along.
The unflinching support of our esteemed readers enabled STATE TIMES to become the first coloured newspaper of Jammu and Kashmir. It acquired yet another distinction of having its Hindi edition from Jammu and the English version from New Delhi. This was due to trust and faith of the people in the bold views we carried with a sense of duty. The commitment to nationalism made STATE TIMES second to none. If the valiant forces and enemies of the nation are fighting aggression of enemy on borders and the hinterland with a barrel of the gun, we are taking on them with our mighty pen. STATE TIMES is synonymous with patriotism. At times, however, this has a cost too, like the one we paid while supporting the heroic and sagacious role of Major Leetul Gagoi in saving many lives and situation in the Kashmir Valley. The young officer of the Rashtriya Rifles hit the headlines after he allegedly tied a man to a jeep purportedly as a shield against stone pelters during polling in the Srinagar Lok Sabha by-election on April 9, 2017. Apart from facing the wrath of terrorists and their supporters, we were threatened and ‘subjected to consequences’ by a senior police officer for our support to the Major. We suffered the ‘consequences’ but did not change our course. We stood at the forefront in support of our brave forces and organised seminars and rallies of eminent intellectuals of the country. We were the first to contribute towards the Kargil Relief Fund with humble but substantial contribution. We honoured brave-heart policemen for their valour and heroism in anti-terror operations in Jammu and on the national highway.
On the professional front, the thought provoking columns by ‘Dost Khan‘ and ‘Blunt Butcher‘ remain the first choice of the readers. So are the dedicated subjects on current affairs, special reports, and issues confronting the society at large. The features, the exclusives and the investigative stories remain hallmark of the STATE TIMES. The exit polls during the 2014 assembly elections carried out by our analysts proved cent percent authentic. This is because they felt the pulse of voters. The public platforms being carried from time to time provide opportunity to readers and opinion makers to express themselves fearlessly.
STATE TIMES keeps sharing the joys and agonies of its learned readers. We have dedicated page-two for carrying obituaries free of cost. We have done our little bit and are committed to do much more.
While expressing gratitude to our esteemed and valued readers for their continued support, STATE TIMES pledges to keep up its tradition of bold journalism with focus on unveiling scams and frauds-social, political and economic-fearlessly. We have done it and we will continue to do it; come what may. This is our silver jubilee resolve.