Itanagar: Coinciding with the World Press Freedom Day observance, a delegation of the Arunachal Pradesh Union of Working Journalists (APUWJ) led by its president Amar Sangno on Tuesday called on State Home Minister Bamang Felix at his official residence here and submitted a seven-point memorandum demanding safety & security of journalists in the state, life insurance cover for journalists accredited with the state government, among others.
The APUWJ in its memorandum demanded the enactment of a special law for the protection of journalists in line with such law enacted by the Maharashtra government, ensuring the safety and security of journalists in the state, life insurance scheme for accredited journalists, publishing status of investigation of all the journalists attack cases and ensuring justice to the families of the journalists being assaulted since 1980 in the state without further delay, etc.
Felix, also the Minister-in-charge of Information & Public Relations, on his part, assured to pursue all the points mentioned in the memorandum, while reiterating the importance of a free press for democracy to function.
Meanwhile, the Minister appealed to the press fraternity to ensure that journalistic ethics are upheld by all its affiliated members.
Extending his best wishes to the journalists across the world on the occasion of World Press Freedom Day, Felix called upon them to uphold journalistic ethics for a vibrant and progressive democracy.
Expressing concern over the unregulated mushrooming of media houses in the state over the past few years, the Minister suggested APUWJ to work out modalities for ensuring a healthy growth of journalism in the state.
“The state government is committed towards the safety and security of journalists. But it is imperative to first identify who is doing ethical journalism so that they can be protected,” said Minister Felix.
Adding that not only journalists but suppression of any person or group is not tolerated by Chief Minister Pema Khandu-led state government, Felix said that freedom of speech is an important part of democracy but it is vital that everyone exercise this right with responsibility.
The Minister also raised concern about growing numbers of unregistered media channels and media persons. He appealed to the APUWJ to regulate the growing number of unregistered media persons.
The APUWJ president called upon fellow working journalists to uphold the journalistic principles and ethics while practicing the profession and “be voice of the voiceless without fear and favour”.
“Being in this profession, the people of faith in us do have huge responsibility. We should live upto the expectations of people to make this country and state a vibrant democracy,” Sangno said.