Ker CM assures to amend controversial circular on media curbstext_fields
Thiruvananthapuram: Days after issuing a controversial circular restricting the media, the CPI(M)-led LDF government in Kerala Monday said it would make "appropriate amendments" in the guidelines in view of the concerns raised by many.
Replying to a submission in the state Assembly, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said the guidelines were not intended to regulate media personnel, but to ensure a better environment for them.
The recent circular issued by Additional Chief Secretary Subrata Biswas had put in place a set of guidelines regarding media's interaction with the chief minister, cabinet ministers and celebrities within the Secretariat and other public places.
Vijayan, however, informed the House that the objective of the government was to make available the response of the Chief Minister, other ministers and MLAs to all media.
The circular had also directed to set up a mobile app to inform the media about their press conferences, he said.
"Certain people have expressed anxiety over the guidelines in the circular. So, appropriate amendments will be made in it after taking into account the existing criteria also in this regard," the Chief Minister said.
According to the controversial circular, the chief minister and other ministers would inform the Public Relations Department (PRD) in advance, if they were planning to interact with the media at public places.
"The media can interact with them only after obtaining prior permission from the PRD," it said.
The circular had said media creates "unnecessary crowd" at airports, railway stations, guest houses and other public places to get responses from prominent persons on various issues.
It also stated that only accredited journalists or those with media passes would be allowed to enter the Secretariat for visiting various sections of PRD, while others can enter during visiting hours.
Besides journalists, the opposition BJP and Congress had expressed concern against the guidelines imposed on the fourth estate.