Cuttack: Vice President Venkaiah Naidu on Sunday said that the menace of fake news threatens to destroy the credibility of media, and media should effectively tackle and disprove fake news by taking control of the narrative.
Speaking on the occasion of 100th anniversary of ‘the Samaja’, a leading Odia daily in Odisha's Cuttack, the Vice President asked the media to shun the tendency to sensationalize and present facts dispassionately without mixing news and views. He further said that media must remain honest and truthful and act with great restraint and responsibility.
Stating that media has been considered the fourth pillar of the democratic system, Naidu said that it has a critical role to play in the formation of public opinion. He asserted that media must empower citizens and help in ushering greater transparency and accountability in the governance system.
Urging media to expose the loopholes in the government, the Vice President said that TRPs, circulation figures and bottom lines, though important, must not dictate media’s path. He said media must place the welfare of the common man and the progress of the nation at the centre of all its activities.
Asserting that media had the potential to be a vehicle for change in status quo, the Vice President called for the reporting and highlighting of more positive stories to inspire positive changes. He asked media to also lend a hand in protecting, preserving and promoting India’s rich cultural heritage and languages.
The Vice President paid tributes to the founder of the Samaja, Utkalamani Paṇḍit Gopabandhu Das and said that he hoped that more and more vernacular newspapers would come up in India, promoting regional languages and spearheading prosperity of rural areas.
The Vice President also released a book on Gopabandhu Das written by Dr Subhash Chandra Mishra. He said that such books on icons would serve as an inspiration to younger generation.