National Press Day observed in M’laya, Manipur

National Press Day observed in M’laya, Manipur
Recipients of Manipur State Journalist Award 2020 with officials of DIPR on Monday. (NP)
Correspondent Shillong/Imphal, Nov 16 | Publish Date: 11/16/2020 12:35:51 PM IST

Along with the rest of the country, the National Press Day 2020 was observed in Shillong and Imphal on Monday by maintaining the safety protocols on the theme “Role of Media during the Covid-19 Pandemic and its Impact on Media”.. 

In Shillong, the programme was organized by the Shillong Press Club and supported by the Directorate of Information and Public Relations, Meghalaya at the Shillong Club premises.

Minister of Information and Public Relations, James P. K. Sangma addressed the function through the virtual media from New Delhi.

Greeting the gathering on the National Press Day virtually from New Delhi, Sangma said that an independent press is an integral element of democracy and it is a key stakeholder in every form of government by virtue of its duty to inform, communicate, educate and engage the public for the purpose of sustainable development and social unification.

 “That is why, we all know, it is the fourth pillar of democracy,” he underscored.

Congratulating and acknowledging the immense contribution made by the media in these “difficult and uncertain times” in providing accurate information to the public by risking their lives during this global pandemic, Sangma underscored the importance of the media in providing reliable and accurate information about COVID-19 pandemic.

Stating that the government has always believed that the media is its “accountability partner” to serve the people and the state for sustainable and responsible development, Sangma urged the media to adhere to the highest standards of journalistic integrity.

The programme was also attended by Secretary, Information and Public

Relations Department Matsiewdor War Nongbri, Director of Information and Public Relations, B. S. Sohliya, Director, Meghalaya Editors and Publishers Association President, R.M. Shabong,  Shillong Press Club President, David Laitphlang and members of the press fraternity.

Later, the members of the media join the webinar organized by the Press Council of India, New Delhi on the theme “Role of Media during the COVID-19 Pandemic and its Impact on Media” held at New Delhi.

Meanwhile, in Manipur on the occasion, eight journalists were conferred with Manipur state journalist award 2020.

State department of information and public relations (DIPR) observed the day as a part of country-wide observance of the day dedicating to acknowledge and honour the Press Council of India (PCI).

Unlike the previous years, DIPR observed the day in a low key at its auditorium so as to ensure COVID-19 SOP is violated.

This year five of the eight awards conferred to journalists reporting in different fields including the best editor award went to ‘Sanaleibak’ daily.

Addressing as chief guest at the award distribution function, commissioner (IPR) M Joy Singh stressed on the importance of observing the day in commemoration of the establishment of the Press Council of India in 1966.

Earlier, Joy also administered a pledge to follow COVID appropriate behaviours during the function.

He said, “The observation of the day on November 16 is symbolic of the freedom of speech bestowed on a journalist and its importance in shaping a society.”

Acknowledging the media’s role in being a critic of the society in bringing a positive change to the society, Joy appealed to the journalists’ fraternity to understand their responsibility towards the society and continue to play a constructive role in the society building process.

IPR director Heisnam Balkrisna highlighted welfare measures initiated and taken up by the department for the journalists of the state. 

He said that the department has increased the cash award for the Best Editor Award on National Integration and Communal Harmony to Rs 40,000 from Rs 25,000. 

Furthermore, pensions for journalists have been increased to Rs. 8000 from Rs. 4000 and family pension to Rs. 5000 from Rs. 2000. 


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