Media should behave with responsibility: President

President Pratibha Patil on Wednesday urged the fourth estate not to compromise with basic journalistic principles.

Mumbai: Regretting over-commercialisation of
the media, President Pratibha Patil on Wednesday urged the fourth
estate not to compromise with basic journalistic principles
work with "honesty, objectivity and conviction" to promote
national goal and build public opinion.
"The need of the hour for the media is to uphold its core
values of honesty, subjectivity and loyalty," she said at a
function here.

"It is not correct to think that just because you (media)
have the freedom, you can be irresponsible," she added.

The President said commercialisation of the media, which
led to TRP ratings and `breaking news` being given prominence
over facts, was a cause of concern.

"The media can play an important role in building
national consensus and protecting the democratic
institutions," she said, adding that apart from a national
agenda, the media should also have a social agenda.

Patil said media should also focus on issues like female
foeticide, dowry, child marriage and alcoholism which if cured
could go a long way in eradicating poverty.
"This century is being billed as an Asian century and all
efforts are required to ensure that India is a leading player.
There may be differences and challenges but we should not let
these affect the stability and democratic structure of our
country," she added.

Patil was here to present the Lokmat Maharashtrian of the
Year award to people from different walks of life. She also
felicitated legendary actors Dilip Kumar and Amitabh Bachchan.

The Lokmat Maharashtrian of the Year awards were give to
Paromita Goswami (social and public service), Raju Shetty
(politics), Himmatrao Bavaskar (science and technology),
Hanumant Gaikwad (business), Bandopant Khedkar (art), Kishore
Kadam (literature), Virdhawal Khade (sports), Sheikh Naseer
Sheikh Niyaz (entertainment).

Dilip Kumar was honoured with the Lifetime Achievement
award, while Bachchan was felicitated with a special award.

On the occasion, Bachchan said he had spent 42 years of
his life in Mumbai and owed his achievements to the city and
Maharashtra. "I have always considered myself a Maharashtrian.
I am learning to speak Marathi," he said.


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