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Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who was the chief guest at the Ramnath Goenka Excellence in Journalism Awards event, shared his thoughts about journalism and media in India and his vision for it in the future. Modi, while speaking about journalists’ contribution to the freedom struggle, said that almost every senior leader during India’s Independence struggle including Mahatma Gandhi and Aurobindo Ghosh involved themselves in active journalism.
PM Modi also said that India had a tradition of artists and poets playing their part in journalism to motivate people and drive them towards social change and revolution. The Prime Minister added that journalists have also played a role in building a robust democracy in India after it attained independence.
Here’s what he said about his vision for media:
“The challenges which media is facing today are much bigger than the challenges it faced during the last century. Today anyone can share information on social media because of which their is an abundance of news. This has posed a challenge for credibility.”
“The advent of social media has led to empowerment of people. But at such a time, maintaining credibility has become an imperative.”
“The world has changed; It is not just the economy which has become globalised, it is our lives. What is the reason that Indian media does not have strong representation in international arena?”
“Our national media should have an impact on international level. When the whole world in debating global warming, if our media was at that level and we had a global institution, we could tell the world how to deal with it.”
“This global institution should not be affiliated with the government at all. Vinobha (Bhave) had once written ‘A-sarkari, Asar-kari’ (Apolitical, Effective).”
“Government’s criticism is good but India is a diverse nation and national unity should be our priority. It should not be compromised.”
“The headlines have changed with time and have become more sensational. We are getting to read more views rather than news. The country doesn’t work only because of governments. We need all the institutions to come together.”