Journalists should focus more on developmental stories: Jai Ram Thakur
State level Press Day function held in Shimla
SHIMLA---- The state level function on the occasion of National Press Day on the theme- 'Journalism Ethics and Challenges in Digital Era' was organised here today by the H.P Information and Public Relations Department.
Addressing the interactive session, Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur stressed that the journalists should give more importance to developmental reporting so that the welfare policies and programmes of the government could reach the common people living at the lowest ebb. They should also highlight the issues relating to the common masses on priority so that appropriate action could be taken at the government end.
The Chief Minister said that journalism was rightly called the fourth pillar of democracy as it was playing a major role in upholding democracy and has influence on our day-to-day life. He said that there was not even a single field which was devoid of challenges and journalism was also not an exception. In the recent years, working as a media professional has become very challenging. Extreme work pressure, time constraint, the competition to survive, culture of paid news and advertorials adopted by media houses for their survival have caused huge pressure on the media as a whole, he added.
Jai Ram Thakur said that in this era of communication, everyone was a communicator or news provider. This has made the role of the working journalist far more complicated and challenging. He said that the Himachal Pradesh was fortunate to have highly professional media. He said that journalist must ensure that whatever they publish or broadcast was factual so that they maintain credibility amongst the masses. The journalists must function freely, fearlessly and without any bias so that they did not lose credibility with readers and viewers.
He said that the present digital era has posed a big challenge before the print media. The social media in particular should work with greater responsibility and professional ethics. At times, it has been felt that social media in a bid to catch the deadline disseminate news without verifying facts. He said that the journalists working in web media must ensure that whatever they report must to based on facts.
The Chief Minister also released magazine Penmanship Personified published by Sarla publications, Shimla and edited by Dr. Usha Bande, a retired Principal from Government College, Arki.
Earlier, during his address, senior journalist Ashwani Sharma said that digital media has come up as a strong media. We will have to accept the changes in the journalism resulting due to technical advancements. As far as credibility and authenticity of digital technique was concerned, the question would always remain unanswered because nobody can take responsibility of social media. He stressed that the journalists would have to redefine their role as social media was breaking the on-spot news instantly.
He said that despite emergence of digital media, the importance and role of newspapers has not gone down as the news is published on certain ethics and responsibility is also fixed for providing misinformation.
Media Advisor to the Chief Minister Rohit Sawal said that techniques are changing fast and the digital media is the future media as people do not have enough time to go through detailed news items. However, it should be ensured that the ethics of journalism are not compromised for speedy delivery of news.
Assistant Professor of journalism department of H.P. University Shimla Dr. Vikas Dogra threw light on various aspects of journalism. He said that complete responsibility should be fixed while publishing or reporting any news.
Director, Information and Public Relations Anupam Kashyap while welcoming the Chief Minister and other dignitaries said that the Press Day celebrated each year symbolises free press in India.
He said that state government has maintained cordial relations with the media persons and various schemes have been started to ensure their welfare besides providing facilities up to sub-division level to facilitate them in their day-to-day working. He also thanked the journalists for giving wide publicity to the welfare schemes and developmental works of the state government.
Joint Director Pradeep Kunwar presented the vote of thanks.
Chairman, HIMFED Ganesh Dutt, Advisor to the Governor and Chairman Journalism Department, HPU Dr. Shashikant Sharma, journalist from print, electronic and web media and students of journalism department of HP University and APG university participated in the function.