Press Freedom Current Affairs - 2019
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International NGO, Reporters without Borders has released the World Press Freedom Index 2019. The index is based on the assessment of the countries’ press freedom records in the previous year.
The report is partly based on a questionnaire which asks questions about pluralism, media independence, environment and self-censorship, legislative framework, transparency, and infrastructure.
World Press Freedom Index 2019
- The World Press Freedom Index 2019′, topped by Norway which is followed by Finland, Sweden, Netherlands and Denmark.
- The 2019 index finds that hatred against journalists has degenerated into violence, contributing to an increase in fear around the world.
- India has dropped two places on a global press freedom index to be ranked 140th out of 180 countries and the report indicates an increased sense of hostility towards journalists across the world, with violent attacks in India leading to at least six Indian journalists being killed in the line of their work last year.
- The report notes that at least six Indian journalists were killed in connection with their work in 2018. Violence against journalists including police violence, attacks by Maoist fighters and reprisals by criminal groups or corrupt politicians is one of the most striking characteristics of the current state of press freedom in India.
- The murder of journalists highlighted the many dangers that Indian journalists face, especially those working for non-English-language media outlets in rural areas.
- South Asia in general features poorly on the index. Pakistan has dropped three places to 142, and Bangladesh has dropped four places to 150.
- In Africa, Ethiopia (up 40 at 110th) and Gambia (up 30 at 92nd) have significantly improved from last year’s Index.
- Both Vietnam (176th) and China (177th) have fallen one place and Turkmenistan (down two at 180th) is now last, replacing North Korea (up one at 179th).
The report concludes that the number of countries regarded as safe, where journalists can work in complete security, continues to decline, while authoritarian regimes continue to tighten their grip on the media.
Tags: Asia • Bangladesh • China • Denmark • Ethiopia
The National Press Day (NPD) is celebrated every year on November 16 as symbolic of free and responsible press in India. This was the day on which Press Council of India (PCI) started functioning as moral watchdog to ensure that not only did press maintain high standards expected from this powerful medium but also that it was not fettered by the influence or threats of any extraneous factors.
Press Council of India (PCI)
PCI is a statutory body with mandate to act as watchdog to oversee conduct of the print media. It derives its mandate from Press Council Act, 1978. It consist of Chairman (who has by convention, been a retired judge of Supreme Court) and 28 other members off whom 20 represent press, five are nominated from two Houses of Parliament and three represent cultural, literary and legal fields. It is statutory, quasi-judicial body acting as watchdog of press. It adjudicates complaints against and by press for violation of ethics and for violation of freedom of press respectively.