TODAY -

Seminar dissects media's role in conflict situation
Source: Chronicle News Service

Imphal, December 20 2023: As part of the year-long golden jubilee celebration of All Manipur Working Journalists' Union (AMWJU), a one-day seminar on 'Role of media in the present situation of Manipur' was held on Wednesday at Manipur Press Club.

The opening session of the seminar organised in coordination with Directorate of Information & Public Relations was attended by IPR director Dr Th Charanjit Singh as chief guest, AMWJU president Bijoy Kakchingtabam as president, DIG N Herojit as special guest and Editors' Guild Manipur president Khogendra Khomdram as guest of honour.

In his address, Dr Charanjit disclosed that as a fallout of the conflict situation DIPR too is facing various challenges including in dissemination of information about government activities to the public through media houses and journalists.

Stating that media houses and journalists serve as oxygen to the directorate, he expressed hope that the existing close coordination between the department and media houses will continue and called upon media houses and journalists to endeavour for restoration of peace and normalcy in the state.

According to Dr Charanjit, among other programmes launched for the welfare of journalists under specific rules and guidelines, the pension scheme launched by the department has outstanding instalment dues for as many as three years by the beneficiary journalists while there are frequent instances of irregular payment of the monthly instalment.

However, rules and guidelines of the scheme could be amended in consultation with journalist fraternity, he said.

Delivering the opening remark, AMWJU president Bijoy Kakchingtabam said as the media houses had been working under intense pressure from various quarters after outbreak of the violence in Manipur on May 3 the seminar was conceived to discuss the role of media in this present situation in the state.

During the height of the violence, district correspondents could not be communicated with mainly due to ban on internet.

Amidst the challenges, Editors' Guild of India levelled uncorroborated allegations against media houses of Manipur prompting AMWJU to approach DIPR for organising a seminar.

Though the seminar could not be held as planned earlier due to paucity of fund, the topic for Wednesday's seminar was chosen to reflect on the on-going conflict situation to help the media houses publish authentic reports, he said and also reminded the participants about difficulties faced by media houses and journalists due to ban on internet for a long time.

During the technical session of the seminar chaired by retired IIS B Sharma, Imphal Times editor Rinku Khumukcham presented a paper on 'Hardship and difficulties faced by media persons and newspaper houses in the present situation' while DIG N Herojit deliberated on 'Expected role of media in the present situation of Manipur', Impact TV chief editor Rupachandra Yumnam on 'Press freedom and relation betweeri security forces and press in this present situ ation' and Assam Tribune correspondent Sobhapati Samom on 'Internet ban and role of digital media in this present situation' as resource persons.

Other resource persons namely Imphal Free Press senior editor Irengbam Arun presented a paper on 'Role of mainstream media in this present situation in com parison with local media' while Manipur Hill Journalists' Union president Peter Adani presented a paper on 'Difficulties and problems faced by district newspapers and correspondents in this situation'.

Joint director (IPR) T Romesh also present ed a paper on 'Role of DIPR to facilitate the parachute journalists and local media in this present situation' .


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