On the occasion of National Press Day, the Vice President of India, M. Venkaiah Naidu awarded the winners of ‘National Awards for Excellence in Journalism 2019′ at New Delhi on Saturday. The journalists in different areas were honoured for their outstanding and exemplary work in journalism at an event organized by Press Council of India.
Speaking on the occasion, the Vice President highlighted the significance and the role of media. He emphasized that ever since the launch of the first newspaper in India-‘The Bengal Gazette’ by James Augustus Hickey in 1780, the press has been playing an outstanding role in empowering the people.
In his address, the Vice President Naidu said “The cardinal principle of journalism is to present fair, objective, accurate and balanced information to the reader and viewer without journalists assuming the role of the gatekeepers”.
Naidu also spoke of the evils of fake news and urged media to always maintain objectivity, fairness and accuracy, “ With the electronic and social media providing news by the minute with alerts and flashes on smart phones, journalists will have to exercise greater caution and guard against ‘fake news’, disinformation and misinformation”.
The Vice President also appealed to media to provide greater space to development news and important sectors such as agriculture. Naidu further lauded the efforts of the Press Council of India for its role in promoting responsible journalism in the country.