GUWAHATI: Assam Water Resource Minister Pijush Hazarika warned the news media portals and have asked them to follow ethics and not to behave like kings.
Expressing displeasure over the conduct of a section of portal media, the Minister said, "If a newspaper or television news channel publishes or airs defamatory items, people can go a Court. But there are no such rules for the portals. Taking advantage of it, some portals have started behaving like kings."
The Minister added that the Assam government is mulling to bring a law for the portal news media. However, he clarified that the incumbent state BJP never favours imposition of curb on freedom of speech.
Elaborating about the proposed law, he added, "We are thinking to bring a law under which all owners of portal news media must declare their names. Besides, the portals will have to register as per the provision of law. They must declare their employees' salary, addresses of the offices etc."
The Minister said that no one could behave like a king and the government would not let it happen.
Recently this month in Assam's Silchar district, a journalist has been charged with sedition for allegedly publishing an article about Pradip Dutta Roy's arrest.
On the other hand, on December 10 the Supreme Court has said that state force should never be used to browbeat a political opinion or journalists, calling for "introspection from the political class across the country" over the debasement of dialogue that is taking place, while also urging scribes to be more responsible in the "Twitter age." While quashing the FIRs against editors of a news web portal and others in connection with articles published in West Bengal, a bench comprising of Justices S K Kaul and M M Sundresh made these observations.
Different perspectives and opinions, including political opinions, are inevitable to exist in a country that prides itself on its diversity, according to the Supreme Court.