Interlocutors slams media in JK; suggests training for journos | chandigarh | Hindustan Times
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Interlocutors slams media in JK; suggests training for journos

chandigarh Updated: May 24, 2012 18:33 IST
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The interlocutors on Jammu and Kashmir have criticised the role of media and journalists in the state for "inventing events for political game" and suggested a short-term training to hone their reporting and writing skills.

"The role of the media, too, has been complex, combining positive peace support with mistruths that undermine peace initiatives. Barring a small handful of anchors and reporters, the national media have underreported conflict areas and tend to focus on moments of violence or recrimination.

"The local media, by contrast, have given far more attention to peace process developments but -- as occurs routinely in conflict situations -- there are some amongst them who are selective in what they report and biased in favour of one or another political position," the interlocutors' report made public on Thursday said.

The report found "flaws" in the role of a few journalists who "invented" quotes for their stories which resulted in "stumbling block" for peacemakers.

Commenting on the role of journalists in the state, it said "a few even go as far as inventing events and quotes for stories. To these few, journalism appears to be a political game rather than the pursuit of fact".

"The negative fallout from this kind of journalism is that it acts as a brake on peacemakers who wish to move forward from stated positions, especially amongst the dissident groups," the interlocutors said.

The 176-page report of the interlocutors - Dileep Padgaonkar, Radha Kumar and MM Ansari - which was submitted to home minister P Chidambaram in October last year, recommended that curbs on Internet and mobile telephone usage need to be urgently reviewed.

It has suggested newspaper editors in the state be encouraged to participate in the activities of the Editors Guild of India and other national and South Asian professional bodies.