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Media Persisted with Empowering People Despite Pay Cuts Due to Covid

By Team BiharConnect

Media sector has been hit hard due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. A large number of media persons have lost their jobs and those who have managed to save the job had to take cut in the pay. Despite this tough economic condition media at large have persisted with the mission of empowering the people with information.

Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu has termed media persons on the ground as ‘frontline warriors’ for their dedicated efforts in presenting the narrative of the pandemic for wider awakening.

“With the economy contracting due to restrictions, advertisement revenues have dried up. Scale of operations had to be adjusted and a good number of media persons had to take a cut in the pay. But, by and large, the media persisted with the mission of empowering the people, when it is needed the most,” Naidu said in his Facebook post titled “Media: Our Partner in Corona Times”.

He hailed the media for empowering the people with necessary information, analyses and perspectives about various aspects of the outbreak of coronavirus and the COVID-19 pandemic and partnering with the anxious people in the ongoing fight against the disease.

Naidu noted that masked reporters persisted with unmasking the ground realities like the hardship of migrant workers on their way home and in the process, some of them were tested positive and some even lost their lives.

He said that when people run into adversity, they look for information regarding its causes and consequences, its duration and the means of coping with it and it falls on the central and state governments and media to equip the people accordingly.

Besides being a vehicle of much required empowerment of people for taking informed actions against the spread of virus and fighting the disease, media played the role of a chronicler of the pandemic for use by prospective historians of the pandemic and as the bridge between the people and the governments for regular communication on the preparedness.

Naidu said that media also set the agenda for debates in the parliamentary institutions with analytical insights into various aspects of the pandemic and its impacts on different sections of the society.

“I follow more closely the print media. The amount of space provided for coronavirus and the unfolding pandemic, outscored even war time reporting. Innovative product spaces have been introduced and persisted with to cater to the information hungry readers. Extensive analyses of various aspects of the disease and its impacts still continue in a mission mode,” he added.

Vice President observed that without the pro-active and missionary role played by the media, there would have been a vacuum in the fight against the pandemic. Regarding the agenda setting role of the media Naidu said: “By highlighting various aspects of the pandemic and documenting the same in factual and analytical manner, the media has set the agenda for debates and discussions on the management of the pandemic in our parliamentary institutions. Media reports would be the principal sources of reference for raising relevant issues.”

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