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Journos spurn MP after being asked to leave meeting

Mizoram

Journos spurn MP after being asked to leave meeting

Aizawl: Journalists in Kolasib have decided to spurn the lone Lok Sabha member from Mizoram, CL Ruala by stopping coverage of his official programmes and disseminating news about the Kolasib District Development Coordination & Monitoring Committee (DISHA) after they were asked to leave a meeting presided over by the MP on Monday.

A press statement issued by Kolasib District Journalists’ Association (MJA) alleged that they were asked to leave the meeting of DISHA by the MP.

“We have decided to blackout and stop disseminating all the DISHA meetings to be chaired by Lok Sabha MP CL Ruala and all his official programmes in future on print media and electronic media within Kolasib district till our disappointment is acknowledged” the statement signed by Kolasib district MJA general secretary Zomuanpuia said, adding that the journalists also decided to bring up their grievances to the Prime Minister in writing, the same copy of which would be given to the Mizoram Chief Minister and Governor.

DISHA was formed by the central government in August last year for effective development coordination of almost all programmes of the Central Government, whether for infrastructure development or Social and human resource development. It is said to monitor the implementation of 28 programmes and schemes of the ministry of rural development and other ministries to ensure synergy and convergence for greater impact.

Kolasib MJA said that this was not the first time the journalists were refused entry to DISHA meetings, citing a similar incidence in September last year.

‘As the committee meeting generally reviews the implementation of various developmental works  under the central government’s schemes, it is the right of the people to know whether the central government’s programmes are properly implemented. Journalists have the right to report the meeting’s decisions in their papers and there have been no such occasions in other parts of Mizoram where journalist are denied participation at such meetings, the statement said.

“Were there some irregularities the government officials wanted to hide from the public?” the journalists asked, alleging that the government is trying to implement programmes without transparency as journalists are suppressed.

To show their disappointment, the journalists said that all newspapers in Kolasib will be published without editorials during this week starting from Tuesday.

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Co-Editor, Zoramobserver.com. Mr. Khojol is a journalist based in Aizawl, Mizoram. He writes for various national and regional media houses. In his free time, he can be caught reading books and watching movies.

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