Regulations should not become ‘strangulation’ for media, says Vice President

NEW DELHI: Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu pitched for setting up a media body to look into various aspects, like guidelines and regulation concerning its working, adding that regulations should not become “strangulation”.
Speaking at a function to mark the National Press Day, organised by the Press Council of India, Mr Naidu also said that ‘paid news’ has become a “menace” which needs to be rooted out. Noting that “regulations should not become strangulation”, he felt there has to be some regulations if the democracy has to function effectively.
“Political leaders and also media houses should discuss what is best instrument or mechanism to have a body which can take care of all aspects of print and electronic media policy. There should be some sort of broad guidelines and regulations,” the former Information and Broadcasting Minister said while addressing the gathering.
“Press Council of India is only for print. What about the electronic media? Why should there be discrimination?”
Highlighting the responsibilities of the media, Mr Naidu said the journalists must raise the voice of people like those living in rural areas and weaker section of the society.
Criticising sensationalism of news in media, he said the responsibility of journalist is provide correct information with confirmation.
Underlining that news and views should be “separate”, he said views should be placed only on editorial page while the rest should be news which should be complete with “alternate views” in the story.
Information and Broadcasting Minister Smriti Zubin Irani said that voices of media shouldn’t be suppressed and constitutionally it was the responsibility of government to ensure that media had the freedom to speak.
During the occasion, eminent journalists Sam Rajappa and Sarat Mishra were jointly presented ‘Raja Ram Mohan Roy Award’ for their outstanding contributions towards journalism.
While Shalini Nair of The Indian Express, received the ‘Rural Journalism & Developmental Reporting’ award, K Sujith of Mangalam Daily and Chitrangada Choudhury, Freelancer from Odisha, received awards for ‘Investigative Journalism’.
Photo Journalism awards were given to C K Thanseer of Chandrika Daily, and Vijay Verma of Press Trust of India and J Suresh of Malayala Manorama. Gireesh Kumar, Times of India, received the award for Best Newspapers Art.