Journalists asked to bring "character certificates" to cover Modi's event in Himachaltext_fields
Chandigarh: All journalists including those of All India Radio (AIR) and Doordarshan have been directed to produce their "character certificates" in order to get press security passes for covering PM Modi's visit to Himachal Pradesh tomorrow.
The district administration's order seeks media of all platforms including the privately-owned print, digital and news television journalists to bring along certificates of "character verification", according to India Today.
Meanwhile, an official notification issued by the police on September 29, 2022 sought the District Public Relations Officer (DPRO) to supply "certificate of character verification" along with the list of all press correspondents, photographers, videographers, and teams of Doordarshan and AIR.
As per the notification, the certificate of character verification has to be supplied to the office of Deputy Superintendent of Police, CID, Bilaspur by October 1, 2022.
According to the report by India Today, the DPRO Bilaspur Kuldeep Guleria said character certificates are mandatory and refused to accept the official identity cards to issue security passes.
The demand for character certificate of the journalists is now snowballing into a controversy.
Pankaj Pandit of AAP told India Today TV that he is witnessing a bizarre demand for the first time in his 22 years of journalism.
Pandit added that demand to produce character certificate is an attempt to curb media activities.
Naresh Chauhan of the Congress in Himachal Pradesh slammed the district administration's demand, terming it a move against the freedom of the media.
The prime minister's visit to the state comes as the previous trip, scheduled for September 24, was cancelled due to bad weather.
Alongside attending meetings, PM Modi will inaugurate a campus of the AIIMS and will take time off to participate in the Kullu Dussehra celebrations.