Mangalore: 'Journalism is the Journey Towards Truth' - Shashidhar Bhat
By Alok S, Team Mangalorean
Mangalore: The Karnataka Press day was observed by Journalists' Study Centre in the Paiva Couceiro Hall at the School of Social Work, Roshni Nilaya campus on Saturday June 30.
Speaking on the occasion Senior Journalist Shashidhar Bhat said that when he joined as a journalist, the scenario was different. He said that every decade the interests of the journalists kept on changing. He felt that over the years, the interference from the Administration had changed the structure of journalism. "The editor's place has now been replaced by owners. The owners dominate the editor and he/she has to bow down to the orders" he said.
Speaking further he said " The Crucial decisions you take in choosing the news, make you a journalist. Nowadays we see people from other fields come into journalism, Real Estate businessmen for example. If you have any parallel intentions when stepping into journalism, then do not take it up"
He recalled that once upon a time there were journalists whose mere presence in a press meet would send chills down the spines of major politicians, as they feared what questions would press reporters pose at them.
In journalism it is important to have knowledge on local languages he stressed. He also questioned about the media glare on political drama while villagers suffering from poverty are not highlighted. He defined journalism as the journey towards truth, and urged the gathering to question everything.
Child Welfare Committee chairperson Asha Nayak also spoke on the occasion and said that children who commit crime also have the same rights as adults and some more. If a child is guilty of a crime, it should not be punished but must be sent to a reformation home or rehabilitation centre. She also urged the media not to violate the law by portraying picture of children rescued from various places. However she said "You can reach their sad stories to the masses, provided you blur their pictures and change their names. You can focus on exposing the perpetrators instead of the victims. Do not sensationalize the issues over a limit".
She mentioned that the children rescued by the CWC will be sent to 'foster homes' for a period of six months after the background of the foster parents is checked. The survey officers will keep tracking the care given to the child.
She also remarked on the existence of begging children on the streets in the city. She said instead of giving them money or something to eat, citizens could call the (toll free) child helpline on 1098 and the children will be rescued and a permanent arrangement for their care will be made.
Theatre artist Prasanna Heggodu in his presidential address urged that even after turning a journalist one should remain a human being. He recalled that in the past, life was steady but now people live a hurried life. Earlier there was much of muscular activity giving exercise to our bodies which is now replaced with machines. Nowadays, physical activity has been displaced by mental activity. While physical activity gives you a good sleep and keeps you fit , too much mental activity causes insomnia. He urged the journalists and future journalists to reach out journalism through their identity instead of reaching out their identity through journalism.
A documentary on 'Development of Mangalore' was screened on the occasion. Journalist Study Centre President Praveen Padigar was also present along with many journalists and journalism students. The programme was compered Safiya.
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