Javadekar wants media to suggest ways to strengthen its independence

NEW DELHI: Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar has called for solutions from the media fraternity to encourage freedom of the press while also ensuring responsible journalism.

Javadekar stressed the need to increase the powers of the Press Council of India (PCI) after proper consultations. "We are a democratic country; we do not want to have external control, government control on any format of information. But at the same time, the freedom has not come for free. The freedom mandates us to be used in a responsible way," he said.

"So it is responsible freedom and to that end the press fraternity and the media fraternity will definitely think and come out with solutions and suggestions to us so that there can be a real freedom and real responsible journalism," he said, adding that media did not enjoy freedom in all countries like it did in India.

He said as a Press Council member, he had seen what kind of complaints come and also noted that sometimes when Press council censors a publication, it is not even published.

"So there is a need to increase, a bit, the rights of the Press Council after a discussion," he added. He felt that that the print media continues to be considered reliable.

Speaking about the functioning of the RNI, Javadekar said it had initiated several measures such as online filing of annual statements, quick disposal of title applications and registration cases, creation of e-mail and mobile number database of publishers and owners and automatic SMS intimation.


He was speaking at a function of the Registrar of Newspapers for India (RNI) where he released the report ‘Press in India 2013-2014’,

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