Media Organisations Express Concern Over Witch-Hunting of Newsclick News Portal

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India Tomorrow

NEW DELHI—Various media bodies, including Press Club of India, have expressed deep concern over the ongoing targeted campaign against the news web portal Newsclick and its founders.

In a joint statement, the media organisations said that the recent accusations leveled by senior political figures, including some Members of Parliament, suggesting that the portal serves as a mouthpiece for a neighboring country are both “unwarranted and condemnable.”

“While Newsclick, like other media outlets, critically examines government actions, this does not render it unpatriotic or a tool of any foreign nation,” said the statement.

The portal features contributions from individuals of integrity and substance. Articles that offer critical yet appreciative perspectives on the policies of other countries should not be mistaken for advocacy on their behalf, nor should they be labeled as anti-national or seditious.

“If the sources of funding for Newsclick are under scrutiny, the same transparency should extend to supporters and backers of various other portals aligned with the establishment. It is imperative for the interests of complete transparency that the sponsors and funding sources of all such portals be disclosed. Without such disclosure, the recent actions targeting Newsclick could rightly be characterized as a witch-hunt,” media organisations commented.

Media organizations function within the confines of Indian law, and it is equally important for government agencies to adhere to these standards. A thriving democracy necessitates that media outlets, regardless of their affiliations, have the freedom to operate without government or corporate pressures. The vitality of a democracy is inextricably linked to an independent media.”

The statement was signed by PCI president Umakant Lakhera, Indian Women Press Corp(IWPC) president Shobhna Jain, Press Association president C.K. Nayak and Delhi Union of Journalists president Sujata Madhok.

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