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SPC takes exception to Mukul's comment

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  12 March 2015 12:00 AM GMT


SHILLONG, March 11: The Shillong Press Club has taken exception to the allegation of Chief Minister Dr Mukul Sangma alleging that the local media were acting as “publicity houses of terrorist organizations” and said that it “finds it in bad taste”.

The Shillong Press Club also viewed with concern the statement of the Chief Minister that the government would consider coming out with certain laws to check the media in their discharge of duty.

The press fraternity said that this is seen as an attempt to gag the press and freedom of expression, which is the fundamental right of all Indians.

The Shillong Press Club also said that it iterates its commitment to free and fair jourlism for the benefit of the people of the State in all aspects and expects the government to support the media in the state in this endeavour.

The Shillong Press Club also said that it was committed to serve the people of the state diligently without fear or favour to the best of its ability.

It also said that it welcomed criticism that will build the Fourth Pillar of Democracy as it strives to work for the overall benefit and betterment of the State.

On March 10, Dr Sangma while replying to a motion on the failure of the tourism department to promote tourism in the Garo hills in the state Assembly blamed the media both tiol and local for lack of adequate dissemition on issues pertaining to the state and North East region as well.

The Chief Minister said that the tiol media always focussed their reporting only when unpleasant incidents, which were linked to law and order problem, thereby, creating a negative perception about the states of the Northeast.

He regretted that many other “positive events”, which have taken place in the states of the region, were not captured by the media.

Sangma alleged that the tiol media were writing only negative news about the Northeast which in turn deterred tourists from visiting this part of the country. “The media especially tiol are instrumental in painting negative picture of the Northeast which has caused irreparable damage,” he had said.

The chief minister also said the tiol media did not bother to carry news related to the floods and landslides, which had claimed 66 lives, in the state, particularly in the Garo hills, last year. Turning his ire to the local media, Dr Sangma accused the media of being the “number one publicity house” of terrorist organisations by highlighting their activities even as he threatened to promulgate a stringent law in this regard.

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