Ban on Distribution of Arunachal Times by Local Body Undermines Press Freedom, Says IFJ

The International Federation of Journalists has stressed on the need to respect the principle of free flow of information.

New Delhi: The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has expressed concern over the burning of copies of The Arunachal Times by members of the Adi Baane Kebang Youth Wing (ABKYW) in the northeastern state and has urged the concerned authorities to ensure that those responsible are brought to book.

In a release issued by the IFJ, the organisation stressed on the need to respect the principle of free flow of information.

The media fraternity in Tripura has collectively filed an FIR against those involved in chopping and burning of the copies of the daily and then uploading of the video of it on social media.

The complaint was filed following a meeting of the Arunachal Press Club, Arunachal Pradesh Union of Working Journalists and the Arunachal Electronic Media Association. The state’s press bodies have demanded that ABKYW immediately lift the so-called ban on the distribution of the newspaper and give a public apology.

The ABKYW has also issued an arbitrary ban on the distribution of the daily in the east Siang district and issued what it calls a “show cause notice” on September 28.

“Any attempt to dictate functioning of press bodies by using communal tools will not be tolerated. The community based organisations should understand that a media organisation does not belong to any community, and rather stands for the voiceless people,” Chopa Cheda, the president of the Arunachal Press Club said.

ABKYW, according to the IFJ statement, hit out at The Arunachal Times for “ignoring their voice” and “not backing their demands.” The daily has on its part maintained that it has remained neutral and covered all sides.

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