Chief Minister Oommen Chandy has called for greater tolerance among people’s representatives, especially those in power, in the face of media criticism.

He was speaking after inaugurating the Ruby Jubilee celebrations of the Kottayam Press Club here on Sunday. Mr. Chandy pointed out that there was a rising prevalence of increasing intolerance by public figures in recent times. “Such a trend does not auger well for the greater good of the society. As representatives in the public domain, they are liable to media scrutiny as this would ensure accountability.”

“At the same time, it is also necessary on the parts of journalists to ensure that their critical views are justifiable and are not influenced by ulterior motives. They are the ones responsible for understanding the problems by the society and should strive to devise means in addressing such issues in an earnest manner. Eventually, prosperity and social justice can be brought about only when public figures and journalists learn to adopt a mechanism that struggles to rectify the errors of governance by keeping in view the interests of the society,” he said.

Mr. Chandy lauded the members of the Press Club for their admirable efforts made in the field of journalism. The Press Club has also stood in the forefront for ensuring the welfare of those in the media, he said.

He also assured that the State government would earnestly consider the request made by the Press Club in resolving the existing space limitations it faced. Minister for Information and Public Relations K.C. Joseph, in his felicitation address, cautioned journalists against falling prey into the lure of sensationalism. Instead, their efforts should be streamlined to project the difficulties faced by those in need, he said.

He also pointed out that the media currently hold the additional responsibility of assisting the people’s representatives in ensuring focus during governance and establishing agendas for progress.

The former presidents and secretaries of the Press Club were honoured during the function. Press Club President Joseph Sebastian presided over the function.

Finance Minister K.M. Mani, Revenue Minister Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan, Jose K. Mani M.P., former Supreme Court judge K.T. Thomas, Kottayam Municipal Chairman Sunny Kalloor, founding secretary of the Press Club K.M. Roy, former chairman of the Press Academy Thomas Mathew, Kerala Union of Working Journalists (KUWJ) general secretary Manoharan Morai, Kottayam Press Club secretary R. Rajeev and treasurer T.P. Mohandas also spoke on the occasion.

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