Journalism, I believe, is a profession of the heart. The best of journalists are passionate about what they do and will do. Can any formal degree measure that, especially in these days when degrees are bought and sold like commodities? Traits such as receptiveness, sensitivity and equanimity cannot be measured through examinations.
I am shocked to see that a person like Markandey Katju can suggest a minimum educational qualification for a journalist and set up a committee to determine it. This means to express your opinion, you need to have a basic qualification because the right to press freedom is derived from the right to freedom of expression under Article 19. In this era of social media, prescribing a basic qualification for journalists is impractical.
Sabareesh Gopala Pillai,
We must resist tinkering with the high standards of Indian journalism. Freedom of expression, the courage of conviction, integrity and ability to resist pressure from vested interests cannot be taught in classrooms. The unusual spark displayed by investigative journalists in recent times to expose the murkier side of some of our politicians is unique by any international standards. It is a ray of hope in our democracy.
Journalism is no different from other professions where the actual learning takes place on the field. But that does not take away the fact that some form of basic training is needed, especially on rules and laws governing the media. A journalist should know whether he or she can disclose the names of rape victims and so on.
I read a lot of articles on medical science which are not understood by the journalist. Even doctors learn on the job, but that does not mean the MBBS degree can be given the go-by.