I thought he wouldn’t pull through. And yet his resilience was remarkable, he survived and scaled new heights as an editor and journalist as his views were sought the world over. His Facebook posts revealed his peripatetic ways: only last month he was at the Global Editors’ Summit in Lisbon.
Shujaat had been, for several years, chief of bureau of The Hindu and Frontline, and continued – even till recently – writing for the latter. But his skills had been initially honed by the veteran journalist Ved Bhasin and his beloved Kashmir Times. He founded the English daily Rising Kashmir and the sister publications, Bulund Kashmir (in Urdu) and Sangarmal (in Kashmiri).
For Shujaat, establishing his independence was not easy; his brother is a minister and senior leader of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party. But it is a tribute to his ability to navigate through the minefield of Kashmir’s murky politics that his tweets were these days most retweeted by National Conference leaders, including Omar Abdullah.
Less known is the fact that Shujaat Bukhari, with a doctorate, was a literary and cultural activist. Shujaat was one of the leaders of the Adabi Markaz Kamraaz (literary forum of North Kashmir), which was one of the few vibrant civil society forums working for the rejuvenation of the Kashmiri language and culture.
Shujaat was also active on the Track II circuit, working closely with the London-based Conciliation Resources that brought interlocutors from India, Pakistan and both sides of the Line of