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Media ends boycott of J&K Assembly proceedings

Mediapersons boycotting Jammu and Kashmir Assembly proceedings ended their protest action today after Speaker Mohammad Akbar Lone clarified his recent controversial remark about press liberty.

chandigarh Updated: Feb 29, 2012 18:20 IST
Peerzada Ashiq
Peerzada Ashiq
Hindustan Times

The media boycott of Jammu and Kashmir Assembly proceedings ended on Wednesday after Speaker Mohammad Akbar Lone clarified his recent controversial remark made about the press liberty and revelation of news sources in the Lower House.

"I never meant to hurt the media. My words were misunderstood. What I said in the Assembly is confined to the House only," said Lone on the floor of the Assembly, making it clear that his remark that the media came under his control applies in the House only.

On Monday, the Speaker told the Assembly that "the entire media comes under my control" and he can "ask the newspapers to reveal sources behind the news", despite the Supreme Court ruling that sources could be revealed only in cases pertaining to national security.

The Speaker's remark sparked spontaneous boycott and protests by scribes for three days, with even chief minister Omar Abdullah's Tuesday address not carried by local newspapers in Jammu.

"I realise I should not have used the word control. If I was approached the same day, maybe, I would have rectified or withdrawn it immediately and the present situation may have been avoided.

"Unfortunately, there was miscommunication and the real message was not put across," said Lone in his address to the scribes at his Assembly chamber after Wednesday's proceedings came to an end in the afternoon.

The Speaker asked the media to report the proceedings factually and avoid distorting legislators' image through wrong reportage.

Earlier in the day, the scribes assembled outside the assembly complex in Jammu and staged a sit-in.

First Published: Feb 29, 2012 18:10 IST