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2021 was the toughest year for media and journalism

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The second wave of Kovid 19 proved to be the most deadly of the epidemics for journalists in India so far. The number of people who died suddenly of heart or other physical disorder is also not less.

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Coronavirus (Photo Credit: Demo Pic)

New Delhi:

The second wave of Kovid 19 proved to be the deadliest of the pandemics for journalists in India so far. Not less than the number of dead media personnel who suddenly became victims of heart or other physical disorders and had to lose their precious lives due to lack of timely or proper treatment and hospitalization. If we talk about technical media staff working in the media in the country or non-journalists together, then this number is much higher but till now there are more than 300 unconfirmed information in both the waves of Kovid. Reporting regularly to hospitals with Kovid patients has been part of his duty. Press photographers and TV cameramen became the softest targets. Obviously, the work of a photojournalist is not complete without going on the spot.

Renowned photojournalist Praveen Jain says, “The last 20 months of Kovid have been the most challenging and frightening for the media in India. According to his common people, politicians and voluntary organizations, even though the journalists covering the Kovid epidemic keep calling the journalists as Kovid warriors, but the Prime Minister and other central leaders did not consider them as Kovid warriors anywhere. Whereas in many places of the country, journalists and press photographers became victims of infection while covering hospitals. Praveen Jain, working as a photojournalist for four decades, did Kovid coverage from Gujarat to every corner of the country in the first and second wave of Kovid 19. According to him, my worst eyesight was in Ahmedabad and Vadodara hospitals in Gujarat, where doctors and medical staff ran away from the hospital in fear of Kovid. There was no proper coverage of such incidents, says Jain. In the second wave, media personnel were found covering the plight of hospitals and patients without caring for their lives, despite the panic of Kovid and the death of a large number of people.

Apart from Kovid, photo journalism is also in deep trouble for the last 6-7 years. Jagdish Yadav, a senior photojournalist and editor of the YouTube channel “Perfect Picture”, says, “The entry of journalists has been banned in government functions. Secondly, the space of photos and photo features published in the mainstream media on the common man of the country and the life of the remote areas has shrunk. Yadav says that the Kovid period was also a relief for the governments because the photo coverage from Ground Zero disappeared. Instead, the government propaganda machinery took its place. As a result the truth behind government propaganda to the common people has been covered up. Be aware that according to the World Press Freedom Index released in 2020, India is one of the most dangerous places for journalists to work. In the survey released by Reports Without Borders, India has been placed at a ranking of 142 this year as compared to 180 countries on the lines of last year.

However, the focus of this report is related to the freedom of journalists to do their work. But the report pointed out that organizations affiliated with the Modi government and his party BJP have even received threats of intimidation, violence and murder for publishing only favorable news on the media and failing to do so. In the New York-based ‘Committee to Protect Journalists 2021’, while discussing the excesses committed on journalists globally, 293 journalists were imprisoned worldwide on various charges, compared to 280 last year in 2020. Media experts believe that many of these journalists were put in bars for exposing the government system during Kovid reporting. Neighboring country China remained on the highest media target, while the second number was also neighboring Myanmar. India is also specially mentioned in the reports of CPG. Five journalists were put to death for doing their jobs. These included Avinash Jha, Chenakeshwalu, Manish Kumar Singh and Sulabh Srivastava, TV journalist Raman Kashyap, who was driven by Ashish Mishra, son of Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra Teni, in Lakhimpur Kheri, along with farmers.

In the last winter session of Parliament, in a written reply in the Lok Sabha on 7 December 2021, the government said that assistance is being given under the Journalists Welfare Fund to help the families of the affected journalists. An amount of Rs 2.60 crore has been given in this item in the year 2020-21 and Rs 6.06 crore in the year 2021-22. In Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Andhra, Haryana, Kerala, Jharkhand and other states, separate assistance was given to the families of the deceased journalists. There is a demand of journalist organizations of India that compensation for the death of journalists should be declared 50 lakhs and in this matter the central and state governments should together prepare a national policy.



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First Published : 31 Dec 2021, 10:21:32 PM

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Usama Younus

Usama Younus is the owner and super admin of the site he's is an expert in news editing, tech and entertainment magazine management, and articles editing E.T.C.

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