SILCHAR: In a motivational keynote address to media persons, students and distinguished personalities at the Banga Bhavan auditorium here on Saturday on the occasion of the state-level National Press Day celebration, KG Suresh, former director of Indian Media House, said, “Journalists are accountable to the public which makes them subject to brick and bats for their reporting. A day however is set apart for according appreciation to them. The Press Council of India deserves an accolade for earmarking this day for the remarkable event. Press Council of India, which is often dubbed as toothless, needs to be more galvanised.”
KG Suresh said looking at the various infirmities now plaguing the media in our country, it is time for introspection for the journalists to correct them. “Reporting is one thing, an editorial is another matter. The trend now is to make a cocktail of both which takes away objectivity, the essence of journalism,” he said. “Journalists have to be rooted to the ground for the fair and unbiased representation of facts. The American press being detached from people wrongly reported the return of Hillary Clinton in the last Presidential election”, Suresh observed. The media baron reminded us that the media is not for any government but for people. He cautioned the media fraternity about polarisation in the press which he said is against the basic tenets of journalism. With a sense of humour, KG Suresh said journalists cant follow Mahatma Gandhi’s story of three monkeys. “They have to see evil, hear evil and say evil after all reporting has to be factual.” He had high words of praise for the press for maintaining dignity and decorum after the Ayodhya verdict. “Social and political groups too showed best of restraint,” he said.
“This shows the maturity of Indian democracy. We the journalists are in a hurry in reporting that leads to inaccuracies in news with its bad impact on society”, he again cautioned. He added, “Tendency nowadays is to depend on social media from where fake news circulates.” KG Suresh also decried too much reliance on Google for information.
Hrishikesh Goswami, Media Advisor to Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, said the power of journalism is great to bring about changes for the better. He quoted the well-known adage, “Pen is mightier than the sword.”
In her welcome address, Laya Madduri, Deputy Commissioner of Cachar, traced the history of journalism of Barak Valley. Others who spoke on the occasion included Forest and Environment MinisterParimal Suklabaidya, Aminul Haque Laskar, Deputy Speaker, Dr. Rajdeep Roy, MP, MLA Dilip Kumar Paul. The National Press Day celebration was organised jointly by the Director of Information and Public Relations Office and the district administration of Cachar.