In the first episode of Media Bol, senior journalist Urmilesh, The Wire’s founding editor M.K. Venu and media advisor to former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee Ashok Tandon discuss press freedom.
The Emergency, imposed 42 years ago this month, holds lessons for the Indian media.
A free press guarantees the critical space where people respond to the government’s declarations and methods, and voice their criticism and dissent. To governmentalise the press through coercion would mean dissolving that space.
A fortnightly column from The Wire’s public editor.
In the light of the CBI’s raid on NDTV, the veteran editor says official attempts to muzzle the press can only be fought off if journalists stick together.
It is not the CBI’s business to decide interest rates for loan settlement or set any banking benchmarks, especially if the RBI and Centre have had nothing to say on the matter.
The CBI’s decision to go after NDTV and its founders – while ignoring cases against the Adanis, Ambanis and other powerful businesses despite serious evidence – doesn’t bode well for the agency.
The government is seeking to muzzle media that is critical of the regime.