Two TSE reporters bag State Journalist Awards
Govt will never curtail press freedom: CM

Source: The Sangai Express / DIPR

Imphal, November 16 2021: Senior Staff Reporters of The Sangai Express, Mayanglambam Romen and Sapam Aruna were among the seven recipients of the State Journa-list Awards presented today on the occasion of the National Press Day obser-vation here at the Directorate of Information and Public Relations (DIPR) complex, Nityaipat Chuthek.

The function was graced by Chief Minister N Biren Singh as the chief guest, Information and Public Relations Minister Th Biswajit Singh as the functional president.

Fisheries Minister S Rajen Singh, Commissioner (IPR) M Joy Singh and All Manipur Working Journalists' Union (AMWJU) president Wang-khemcha Shamjai were the guests of honour.

Of the eight categories of the State Journalist Awards presented today, Sapam Aruna bagged two awards-"Women and Children Reporting" and "Science and Technology" as M Romen was feted for "Sports Reporting" .

Two TSE reporters bag State Journalist Awards
Two TSE reporters bag State Journalist Awards

The awards carry a cash prize of Rs 25,000, a memento and a shawl each.

Presentation of the awards and holding a workshop on the topic, 'Who is not afraid of media?' were the main highlights of the observation organised by DIPR, Manipur.

Speaking at the occasion, N Biren Singh stated that the State Government would always uphold 'Freedom of Expression' and would never curtail 'Press Freedom'.

However, one should also ensure that 'Freedom of Expression' does not violate morality and decency, he observed.

Being a leader from the media background, the Chief Minister said, he fully understands the problems faced by the media persons of the State.

Stating that he has a deep honour for media persons, N Biren said that various steps had been taken up by the present Government for the welfare of the media fraternity of the State.

The Manipur State Journalists Welfare Scheme had been introduced to provide one-time financial assistance to the accredited and recognized journalists of the State and their families.

A total of Rs 25 lakh had been utilized from the interest incurred from the corpus fund of Rs 10 crore till date, he added.

Pension amount for retired journalists had been hiked from Rs 5000 to Rs 8000 and from Rs 2000 to Rs 4000 for family pensioners, besides approving one-time age relaxation for enrolment for applicants from the age group of 45 to 65 years, he added.

The Chief Minister also said that coverage of CMHT had been extended to the families of the recognized media persons as well.

In addition to these schemes, the media fraternity may also suggest to the Government how it can help them in other matters, the Chief Minister said.

He also asked them to have healthy competition among them.

The Chief Minister further urged the media fraternity to verify all news items before they are published or broadcasted.

He also requested them to collect detailed facts and figures from the concerned Government departments.

Apart from the media fraternity, N Biren Singh said, the Government had also introduced many welfare schemes for the people of other professions as well like artistes, sportspersons, entrepreneurs etc.

He stated that all-round progress can be achieved only when the Government attends to the grievances of each and every individual.

Th Biswajit Singh said that the Manipur State Journalist Award was instituted in 1994 with only one category of award-Best Editor Award carrying cash prize of Rs 5,000 to acknowledge the contribution of 'journalists' in the State.

Stating that the award now has eight different categories, Th Biswajit Singh said that winners of the award are decided by an independent panel of juries.

Among the achievements accomplished by the present State Government, the Minister mentioned the completion of the new DIPR office building in 2021.He also said that DIPR staff are attached to the office of the Chief Minister, Deputy Chief Minister and all the Ministers to highlight the activities of the present Government and enhance news coverage.

The present Government had also opened District Information Offices for Kangpokpi and Pherzawl districts.

Stating that the media has a great role in educating the masses, Th Biswajit urged the media fraternity to do balanced reporting.

Maintaining that National Press Day is observed every year to acknowledge and honour media's role in rendering impartial service to the society, the Minister further said that a responsible media has great roles in building a civilized society.

Later, the Chief Minister presented the Best Editor Award on National Integration and Communal Harmony to Editor of Poknapham daily Aribam Robindro Sharma.

The award carries prize money of Rs 40,000, a memento and a shawl.

Other State Journalist Award winners other than TSE staffers were, Resident Editor of Hueiyen Lanpao daily Dr Khaidem Athouba Meitei (Parliamentary Reporting); Staff Reporter of People's Chronicle Oinam Mission Singh (Art and Culture); Staff Reporter of Sanaleibak daily Khangembam Shanker Singh (Rural Reporting) and Reporter/Anchor of Impact News Kshetrimayum Premchand Singh (Public Health and Hygiene).

These awards carry prize money of Rs 25,000, a memento and a shawl each.

Later, a workshop on the topic, 'Who is not afraid of media?' was also held with Editor-in-Chief of Impact TV Yumnam Rupachandra as the moderator and Imphal Times Editor Rinku Khumukcham as the resource person.

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