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Press Council Issues Notices To Jagan Govt!

Press Council Issues Notices To Jagan Govt!

The Press Council of India, a watch dog of the media in the country established by Parliament to preserve the freedom of the press, on Tuesday served a notice on the Andhra Pradesh government headed by chief minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy, for ignoring the media persons while constituting the state-level and district-level media accreditation committees.

Taking a suo motu cognizance of the Jagan government’s order dated December 8 on the composition of the accreditation committees, the Press Council of India called for an explanation from the state government.

It said it was a matter of concern that the state government made certain amendments in the media accreditation rules which were not in consonance with the Model Accreditation Guidelines of the PCI released in 2014.

As per these guidelines, the media accreditation committees should have representation to the members of the recognised mainstream media organisations, and also to the members of the Press Council of India in the state-level accreditation committee.

However, as per the GO which modified the rules in the earlier orders, the state-level media accreditation committee comprises Information and Public Relations Commissioner as chairman, representatives of medical and health department, labour department, housing department, chief public relations officer of South-Central Railway or his nominee and managing director of AP State Road Transport Corporation or his nominee as members, while director of I&PR department as member convenor.

Similarly, the district-level accreditation committee, too, comprises only officials of these various departments. There is absolutely no representation to any of the media representatives in the accreditation committees, triggering wide protests from the journalists.

It remains to be seen, how the government will respond to this notice.

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