Stress on media's role in empowerment

Staff Reporter

Thiruvananthapuram: Speakers at a seminar on `Media and the changing India' organised by the Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) here on Monday highlighted the role of the media in empowering the weaker sections of society.

Delivering the keynote address, Thushar Gandhi, the great grandson of Mahatma Gandhi, said an irresponsible media represented one of the biggest threats to society.

"As an auditor and conscience-keeper of society, the media is a vital component in nation-building. It acts as a moderator, allowing weaker sections to keep pace with progress," he said. Mr. Gandhi stressed the need to develop and maintain a mutually-beneficial relationship between the media and society.

The Chief Editor of The Pioneer daily, Chandan Mitra, said the diversity of the media reflected the maturity of Indian society. About the reality of political orientation in journalism, he said party organs were fine, provided they functioned within the broad parameters of objectivity. "Absolute objectivity goes against human nature," he said. Mr. Mitra said the growth of the Indian media was a sign of democratic achievement and empowerment of the people.

It has provided a voice for the downtrodden sections, he said. Mr. Mitra, however, added that the media had been dragged into the rat race of consumerism, leading to the dilution of content. The Mathrubhumi managing director P.V. Chandran, the Malayala Manorama Associate Editor Thomas Jacob, the Kerala Kaumudi Resident Editor Bhasurachandran and the Asianet vice-president K.P. Mohanan were among those who addressed the gathering.

KPCC president Ramesh Chennithala and AICC secretary Tom Vadakkan were also present on the occasion. The seminar was organised in connection with the re-launch of the party organ, Veekshanam.

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