BJP asks Katju to practise restraint

In the wake of his comments against the Nitish Kumar-led NDA government in Bihar, BJP on Tuesday advised Press Council of India head Markandey Katju.

Last Updated: Feb 28, 2012, 22:10 PM IST

New Delhi: In the wake of his comments against the Nitish Kumar-led NDA government in Bihar, BJP on Tuesday advised Press Council of India head Markandey Katju to practise restraint in his public utterances, saying he holds a
sensitive post which has a certain dignity attached to it.

"We have a lot of respect for the Press Council of India. We have fought for press freedom. PCI is a respected body and Markandey Katju should understand that PCI
Chairperson is a post of dignity and one carrying a sensitive obligation," BJP Chief Spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad said.

He pointed out that it is for these reasons that a retired judge is appointed as chaiperson of PCI. BJP`s remarks have come in the wake of Katju`s allegation that there is no freedom of the press in Bihar under the present dispensation.

"It is important for a person holding such an office to practise restraint," Prasad said, adding that Katju should exercise discretion in his public utterances.

Defending the Nitish Kumar government, of which BJP is a constituent, Prasad insisted that the chief minister has been lauded both nationally and at the international level for the development under his leadership.

He said several news channels and media organisations have declared Kumar as one of the best chief ministers.

"Katju had formed a committee to look into this issue (of press freedom in Bihar) and even before its report came out, he has given his opinion," Prasad said.

BJP further maintained that Katju should realise that complaints and delegations reaching out to him could also be sponsored and suggested he should wait for the report of the committee appointed by him.

PTI