It has been almost a month since politicians in Jammu and Kashmir were detained. One month in which given the profound changes in the state mainstream political parties would be worried about their future. Some say it is an existential crisis that these parties face. Discredited on the ground in certain quarters, they will now have to operate within the new space of the Union territory of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh where the strong presence of the central government will be a constant reality. But actually getting down to political business is still some distance away for now; there is no clarity when leaders like Omar Abdullah, Mehbooba Mufti and others will be allowed to go home. Is consolidation of mainstream political forces in the state the only way forward?