Tripura govt. harassing newspaper house's during the lockdown, allegation made by Tripura Newspapers Society

By Our Correspondent

Agartala, Updated: June 30, 2020, 04:17:15 AM   

Agartala, June 30: According to the Tripura News Papers Society, Information Department officials are harassing the news papers offices in the state in defiance of the Press and Book Act of India. Under whose direction and under which law this aggression does not match his answer. 

According to the TNS,  the state Information Department has stopped buying newspapers in government offices on verbal instructions.

According to the society, the state government has not yet introduced public transport. As a result, publishers are supplying newspapers to a small part of the state in vehicles provided by the Information Department. Newspapers are not being supplied in most parts of the state as public transport is not running. Fear of Corona virus infection among readers has also reduced the circulation of printed newspapers. It is not just Tripura. Images from all over India. RNI, a central government agency, is the only one entitled to check the circulation of newspapers. They have suspended verification numbers due to Covid-19 and online submissions until further notice. The internationally recognized body Audit Bureau Circulation has also closed the circulation audit till December 2020.

 India, along with the rest of the world, has shut down many famous newspapers in the wake of Covid-19. Many newspapers have introduced a policy of retrenchment or half pay to keep the newspaper afloat. Due to the long lockdown, all commercial companies have stopped advertising. The most affected is the newspaper and media industry in this country.

The governments of Gujarat, Karnataka, Punjab, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana have already sided with the media by announcing various financial packages so that the fourth pillar of democracy can survive. Alpin, a backward state of Tripura, also has to be imported. Not a single state produces the material needed for newspaper publishing. As a result, the cost of publishing a newspaper in this state is higher than any other state in India. Even in the midst of this dire situation, some brave people are running the state's newspapers and media. Knowing the future is uncertain, six thousand people are directly involved in this industry. There are four thousand news papers sellers on whom their families depend.

In this situations,  
a delegation of Tripura Newspapers Society called on Chief Minister Shri Biplab Kumar Deb on May 27, 2020 to provide financial package to the most backward media industry in the state to sustain the existence of the fourth pillar. CM pleaded to stand by the side with the advertisement.

Claiming to be a believer in the freedom of the press, the chief minister said he would consider the matter sympathetically. But a month later, the Tripura Newspapers Society expressed concern at a general meeting last Sunday after receiving no response from the chief minister, and hoped the chief minister's sympathy would be met.

At the same meeting, members complained that instead of standing by the newspapers in times of extreme crisis, the state government was ignoring the country's customary law and raiding the offices of weekly and daily newspapers to check circulation and staff numbers. Editors of various media outlets have strongly condemned the illegal conduct of the attack by the Information and Culture Department. When all the agencies including the Government of India, RNI, DAVP, Audit Bureau of Circulation were giving concessions due to Covid-19, it was seen that the only Tripura government in the country was attacking the newspapers and media.

The Tripura Newspapers Society has demanded the Tripura government to immediately stop this joke and come down to earth. The Tripura Newspapers Society has demanded the immediate announcement of a financial package to save Tripura's newspapers and media.

Shanit Debray and Arun Nath, joint conveners of the society, expressed deep surprise over the government's silence on the issue of slander and propaganda on social media to silence the voices of journalists and newspaper editors. The meeting was presided over by Mr. Subal Kumar Dey, Chairman of the Society and a senior journalist of the state.

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