Journalists protesting against the media ban in front of Kerala House, New Delhi
A group of journalists from Kerala protested against media restrictions imposed in Kerala by the CPM-led LDF Government on December 3. Journalists, holding placards, gagged themselves with black ribbons and protested in front of Kerala house in New Delhi.
They demanded that the state government restore press freedom and withdraw the controversial order, imposing restrictions on media coverage.
Members of various Delhi-based media fraternities said that the CPM Government is trying to repress the Freedom of Expression in Kerala and create an Emergency-like situation in the state. They also pointed out that the sinister move is intended to sabotage democratic values and constitutionally guaranteed rights prevailing in the state.
The Kerala Government came up with an order making prior permission mandatory for media persons to seek a response from Chief Minister and other ministers on day-to-day issues. The order banned media persons from asking questions and seeking responses of the Chief Minister and other Ministers at Airports, railway stations, guest houses, secretariat and other public places. According to the new instructions released by the Additional Chief Secretary, newsletters from the Chief Minister’s office and other minister’s office can be collected via the Public Relations Department. But only accredited journalists will be able to avail these facilities.