Senior Journalists’ Forum, Kerala

TARGET: To carve a common platform for veteran media professionals in Kerala and to address various issues that are of concern to them.

ORIGIN: Senior Journalists’ Forum (SJF) was formed in 2010. The idea germinated out of a feeling that most scribes, post-retirement recede into oblivion after a distinguished career. “The Forum was primarily formed to give them a reincarnation,” claims a founder member of the organisation. The membership is open to all former members of the Kerala Union of Working Journalists (KUWJ) who are either pensioners or above the age of 50. As of now SJF has 236 members in Kerala and the annual membership fee is Rs. 600 with a one time admission fee of Rs. 100.

Usually memberships are offered following a nomination from the respective district level committees and subsequent approval by the state committee. The Forum has units in all districts in Kerala with an exception of Kasaragod and Wayanad.

ACTIVITIES: By joining SJF many veteran journalists have been rediscovering themselves. “It turned out to be a big respite for many as being a part of the Senior Journalists’ Forum, they could once again revive and re-establish a realistic link with their friends,”says A. Madhavan, General Secretary of the Forum.

During a recently-held state conference, the SJF felicitated the spouses of senior journalists who are no more. “It was a kind of surprise for many who attended the programme,” observes Madhavan.

SJF has been pursuing various issues related to senior journalists. It was through a constant follow up that the SJF could persuade the Government to enhance the pension from Rs. 4,500 to Rs. 7,000. Of late, they are working on a contributory health scheme with governmental support.

Future programmes include intermittent interface with young scribes and to bring out a journal. The Forum also has made it a point to honour octogenarian scribes.

IMPACT: Even though the Senior Journalists’ Forum is a relatively new body, it has initiated a sense of belonging among its members.

Through its varied activities, the SJF could help many senior journalists to shun their dormant life and revert to an active life.

GETTING IN TOUCH: To know more about the Senior Journalists’ Forum and their activities call 9847178836 (General Secretary) or 9847544046 (President) Email: seniorjournalistforum@gmail.com

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