Mumbai: The role of media is to bring to fore shortcomings in society and government and also highlight positive news, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Tuesday and praised the efforts of journalists during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The positive contribution of India’s media helped the country a lot in dealing with the biggest crisis in 100 years,” Modi said at an event to commemorate 200 years of Mumbai Samachar, a Gujarati daily published from Maharashtra’s capital city.
Praising the role of regional media in the country’s independence, Modi said conducting healthy discussions is part of Indian tradition.
“The role of media is to educate people. If there are some shortcomings in society and government, then the role of media is to bring them to the fore,” the PM said. “As much as the media has the right to criticise, it has the same responsibility to bring positive news to the fore.”
Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray was also present on the state with the PM during the bicentennial anniversary of the Gujarati daily. While Modi called Mumbai and Maharashtra the “maternal home” of Gujarati language, Thackeray hoped that “ties between Gujarati and Marathis continue to grow stronger in future as well.”
“I can understand the language (Gujarati) but can’t speak,” Thackeray said, speaking in Marathi. “Since you all are applauding, it means you understand Marathi. Both Gujarati and Marathi have mixed in Maharashtra like sugar in milk. I hope that ties between Gujarati and Marathi continue to grow stronger in the future as well.”
Modi also released a postal stamp to commemorate the occasion. Speaking about the newspaper established in 1822, the PM said: “We are not only celebrating the high standards of journalism of India and journalism related to the concern of patriotism, but this event is also adding to the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav.”
Earlier in the day, Modi inaugurated the Jal Bhushan building and ‘Gallery of Revolutionaries’ at the Raj Bhavan in Mumbai. Thackeray was also present at the event.