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Nationwide dharna by journalists on June 25 for Journalist Protection Act

Rishikesh, May 20, 2012 : The two-day National Executive meeting of National Union of India (NUJ-I) , which concluded at Parmarth Niketan here today, has decided to organize nationwide dharnas on June 25 to press upon their demand for enactment  of a Journalist Protection Act.

The meeting was presided over by NUJ (I) national president Shri Prajnananda Chaudhary and over 200 delegates from different state units attended the meeting. Head of Parmarth Niketan Swami Chidananda Muni Saraswati, Achrya Bal Krishan of Patanjali Yogapeeth, Panchayati Raj Minister of Uttarakhand Shri Pritam Singh addressed the delegates at the inaugural session while the valedictory session was addressed by Finance Minister of Uttarakhand Smt Indira Haridyesh.

According to NUJ (I) Secretary General Ras Bihari, a massive dharna would be organised at Jantar-Mantar in New Delhi on that day, which would be attended by hundreds of senior journalists from all mainstream media institutions. Similar dharnas will be organised in all state capitals by the state units. A memorandum to this effect will be presented to Prime Minister and President of India in New Delhi, Governors and Chief Ministers in States and the Collectors/District Magistrate at the District level.

Referring to the promise already made by Maharashtra Government to enact a similar law for the protection of mediapersons treating them at par with the public servants in this matter, the NUJ-I National Executive  demanded that the Central Government should intervene to enact such a legislation and should also encourage the States to follow the suit.

In another resolution, the National Executive expressed grave concerned over the continued refusal by the newspapers managements in implementing the Majithia Wage Board recommendations and once again urged the central government to enforce the wage board recommendation. “The year 2012 calls for heavy sacrifice on the part of working journalists to ensure their future in the context of 12 long years of denial of wage revision,” the resolution said exhorting the mediapersons to intensify their agitation in this regard.

Since the NUJ (I) is going to complete 40 years shortly it proudly recalled that within five years of its formation the NUJ (I) had committed itself to ethical journalism which came to be known as the Agra Declaration.  “Our next historic contribution should be to adapt the declaration to work in the emerging multi-media scenario,” a resolution to this effect said.

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