SRINAGAR: The three-member panel of Press Council of India (PCI) led by S N Sinha Tuesday discussed various issues pertaining to the media in Jammu and Kashmir with the officers of Department of Information and Public Relations (DIPR).
The members of the visiting PCI Sub-Committee include C K Nayak, Dr Suman Gupta and Naveen Joshi.
Director Information, Muneer-ul-Islam apprised the PCI panel in detail about the functioning of DIPR and the steps being taken by the State Government to facilitate smooth functioning and growth of the media organizations and working journalists in J&K.
The PCI panel asked DIPR to further strengthen the amenities available to the media fraternity including institution of a welfare scheme, health insurance, pension scheme and travel concessions for the working journalists.
The PCI team is currently visiting J&K to have first-hand appraisal of the media scenario in Kashmir and the challenges confronting the journalists in the State. The Sub-Committee will be visiting Jammu and Ladakh separately to interact with the media-persons there and will then give its recommendations regarding the media scene in J&K.
Earlier Tuesday, the representatives from Official Media organizations including Doordarshan and AIR called on PCI panel and apprised them of their on-ground functioning, difficulties and the issues they face while performing their duties.
The delegation of official media organizations included M A Tantray, Deputy Director Regional News Unit, Radio Kashmir, Srinagar, Qazi Salman, Deputy Director News, Doordarshan Kendra Srinagar, Tariq Ahmad Rather, Deputy Director, News Services Division, All India Radio and Shabir Ahmad, News Editor, RNU, Doordarshan Kendra, Srinagar.
The representatives of the official media informed the PCI team about the acute shortage of manpower in their respective units which they said was hampering the smooth functioning of these organizations.
The PCI team also held detailed interaction with veteran journalist and editor Mohammed Syed Malik and discussed issues confronting the media in Jammu and Kashmir. Malik shared his vast experience as a journalist as an editor and as the former Director Information with the PCI team.
A delegation of the Editors of Small and Medium Newspapers also called on the PCI team and sought their intervention in enhancing financial support to their publications through government advertisements which is the only source of income for them.
The PCI panel also met the Governor N N Vohra and the Information Minister, Choudhary Zulfkar Ali Tuesday.
The PCI team held day-long extensive deliberations with editors and working journalists here yesterday. The delegations who called on the PCI team yesterday included Kashmir Editors Guild, Jammu Newspaper Editors Guild, J&K Press Correspondents Club, Kashmir Working Journalists Association, Working Journalists Association Kashmir, Young Journalists Association Kashmir, J&K Press Photographers Association and Kashmir News Agencies Association.
The Sub-Committee members will be holding separate meetings with journalists at Anantnag and Baramulla. They are scheduled to meet the Chief Minister, Ms Mehbooba Mufti, former Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah, Finance Minister, Dr Haseeb Drabu and Director General of Police Dr S P Vaid.
The delegation of J&K Joint Forum of Newspapers Editors led by Ghulam Hassan Kaloo is also going to meet the PCI team at State Guest on 21 July 2017.