Central Executive Committee of the Students’ Federation of India strongly condemns the unprecedented decision of the inter-ministerial committee of the Union Ministry of Information Broadcasting to take NDTV India off the air for a day (November 9).
The ridiculous argument given by the government behind this order is that the channel's coverage of the Pathankot terror attack on January 2, 2016 that the government claims gave out sensitive information to the handlers of terrorists. NDTV in its response to a show cause by the government has maintained that its coverage did not carry any information that had not been covered by the rest of the media, and was in the public domain. Government could have used many other legal options, if any of the content was indeed problematic.
In fact, it is quite ridiculous, that it was the central government, which made a mockery of the national security in the manner that the entire Pathankot episode was dealt.
This action is a direct assault on the freedom of media and hence also the freedom of the people of India. This authoritarian assault is a stark reminder of the similar episodes during the emergency declared by the Congress party during 1975-77. In the recent past, we have seen similar attacks on the freedom of press & journalists in Kashmir and Chhatisgarh as well.
CEC demands that this order from the ministry of I&B be withdrawn immediately. If this is not done then SFI will organize action programmes across the campuses against this brazen attack on democracy.
VP Sanu (President)
Vikram Singh (General Secretary)