Veteran journalist and Chairman of Kashmir Times group, Ved Bhasin passed away here due to a prolonged illness.
The 86-year-old journalist was suffering from degenerative brain disease for the last several months. He breathed his last at his residence in Gandhinagar belt of Jammu city last night.
Popularly known as the 'Grand Old Man' of English journalism in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, Bhasin had written for a range of newspapers, journals and columns.
He started his journalism career with Naya Samja, an Urdu weekly from 1952-54. Later, he founded the Daily Kashmir Times in 1955. He had also worked with news gathering agency UNI as its J&K bureau chief from 1963-1969.
Bhasin was President of J&K Association of Journalists, Jammu Editors Conference, and Press Club of Jammu twice and served on various Press bodies including Press Advisory Committees (as Convener) for a number of years.
The journalist is survived by two daughters, Anuradha Bhasin and Anju Bhasin. Anuradha is also working as a journalist.
Mourning the demises of the noted journalist, General Secretary of the Editors' Guild of India, Prakash Dubey, said in a statement that Bhasin was a liberal voice much sought after by television and radio networks.
"His association started with Kashmir Times in 1955 and he served the paper as its editor. A democrat in his functioning, he encouraged discussion and dissent in the newsroom. The paper became an institution in the region. Under his command, newspaper became a nursery for generations of budding journalists who learnt the art under his watch," he said.
Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha and Former Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir, Ghulam Nabi Azad said, "Ved Bhasin sahab was a trailblazer and trend-setter in the sphere of journalism in J-K. He belonged to that creed of journalists who stood for their ideals and convictions without getting digressed by the charms of materialistic world."
Acknowledging his rich legacy as a social activist and progressive thinker, Azad said that Bhasin was a humanist to the core who strove all along to uphold the values of secularism, pluralism and democracy notwithstanding the grave provocations and challenges which the state faced from time to time.