GUWAHATI: Biswajit Daimary, the speaker of the Assam Assembly, felicitated nine members of the media community on the successful completion of the three months training related to reporting problems related to child rights. While speaking on the occasion, Biswajit Daimary mentioned that a fund of Rs 1 lakh was released to each of the 126 constituencies to be spent for the awareness of children's rights.
Apart from the Bisawjit Daimary, Prof Ramesh Ch Deka, VC of Cotton University, Dr Sunita Changkakati, Chairperson of Assam State Committee for Protection of Children and Dr Madhulika Jonathan, Chief of Field Office, UNICEF Assam were also present for the event. Pankaj Saikia, who was also among the felicitated media persons, was awarded the Media Award for in-depth reporting on issues of violence against children.
The fellowship program was announced earlier this year by UNICEF India and Cotton University with support from the Directorate of Information and Public Relations of Assam. It was aimed at creating public awareness around the main issues. The selected fellows travelled to the highly burdened districts of the state and highlighted stories related to children in those areas. The objective of presenting them to the Speaker was to encourage a policy discourse in the Assembly. The Fellows were chosen from different newspapers and TV channels from Assam.
Dr Madhulika Jonathan spoke about the importance of working with legislators, media and youth in safeguarding Children's Rights. She also thanked the Speaker of the Assam Legislative Assembly for being a torchbearer for children and women's rights in the Assam Assembly.
"The sensitization of MLAs has been initiated. We saw questions raised by MLAs during the last Monsoon Session around trafficking of children, which resulted with the Hon'ble Chief Minister promising a Domestic Labour Bill, " she added.
Dr Sunita Changkakati highlighted the efforts of the Suraksha campaign for increasing public awareness and system strengthening on child protection issues.
Professor Ramesh Chandra Deka spoke about the need for ethical reporting on children's issues and the need to mainstream their issues. And Deepak Kumar the Regional Director of NSS highlighted the engagement between UNICEF and NSS in the state regarding child protection.