Telangana: Addressing a meeting of the Telangana Union of Working Journalists (TUWJ) on Sunday, Bharat Rashtra Samithi MLC Kavitha Kalvakuntla said if a political party owns a newspaper, it should acknowledge the same.
Speaking at the meeting, which was attended by several delegates from the Indian Journalists Union (IUJ), Kavitha acknowledged that her party runs a newspaper called ‘Namaste Telangana’, which helps disseminate her party’s ideology to the masses.
She alleged that some local dailiies, which do not come clean on their political leanings, run news stories that goes against the interests of Telangana.
“These newspapers are always looking to find faults in the working of the government and publish them on their front pages to defame Telangana. If a political party owns a newspaper, they should acknowledge it. They preach something and print something else,” she said.
She claimed that in an age where rival political parties use newspapers to defame the government, one has to refer to 3-4 newspapers in order to know the truth.
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The BRS MLC cited a story from the Mahabharata where Krishna suggested that the Pandavas speak against Ashwatthama to stop Dronacharya and drew a patrallel with the present-day media.
She said that the loss inflicted by a piece of news cannot be rectified with anything the media says afterwards.
She said that it is unfortunate that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has not addressed an open press conference in the last 9 years and no journalist has ever questioned him on it.
“It is unfortunate that the Prime Minister gives selected interviews and just conveys what he wants to. Meanwhile, Telangana’s Chief Minister addresses a minimum of 300-350 journalists at a press meet and answers all their questions,” she said.
She asked the IUJ delegates to encourage journalists to ask questions and take up investigative journalism, which is “long lost now”.
She said, “We are very proud of IJU which has constantly been working for the welfare of journalists across the country. We are very happy that all of you are here. We will always support you.”
Noting the state policy of providing stipends to journalists, she said, “For the first time, a widow of a journalist is being given a pension Rs 3,000 by a state government through a media academy. A stipend of Rs 1,000 per month is also being given to their children who have not cleared the 10th standard.”
She added that her party will also demand that the Central government implement welfare schemes for journalists similar to Telanganas.