Regional issues don’t get priority in national media

Speaking on the topic ‘Regional aspirations in national media,’ Goswami was of the view that issues from some parts of the country did not figure in the priority list of national media. This was because of the inability of mediapersons to effectively ‘push a story.’

He cited the recent violence perpetrated by security personnel in Kamakhya and said that the incident was not highlighted the way it should have been. Placing the blame on opinion-makers and political leaders, he said that they have failed to project regional concerns in the national limelight.

He urged the regional media to be aggressive and favoured investigative journalism focusing on corrupt practices. The media had the right to dig deep into public affairs and those responsible for corruption and other malpractices should be identified. He regretted that there was an acute absence of exposes and penetrating reports, which could shock and embarrass those who were guilty.

Earlier, the function witnessed moving moments when the founder editor of the Asam Bani Satis Chandra Kakati, was felicitated and he addressed the gathering. In his brief speech, the veteran journalist spoke about the background to the weekly’s appearance in July 1955.

In a voice choked with emotion, he recalled how late Radha Govinda Baruah approached him to be the editor and how both of them made attempts to make the weekly a medium that reflected the aspirations of the masses. He described Asam Bani as more than a news weekly, and called it a part of Assamese national life.

In his welcome address, Tulsi Govinda Baruah, Chairman of the Assam Tribune Group of Newspapers said that the golden jubilee of Asam Bani was a memorable occasion, because not many newspapers could achieve this status. Referring to the path-breaking role of the weekly, he stated that the Asam Bani was one of the first newspapers to give voice to the common people. It had a seminal role to play in providing a platform to women writers and women’s issues. He appreciated founder editor Satis Chandra Kakati’s role in giving a definitive shape to the weekly.

Dr Nagen Saikia, editor of Amar Asam and former president of Asam Sahitya Sabha alluded to the positive role of Asam Bani in the cultural and literary arena of Assam. Appreciating the weekly for maintaining its standards for five decades, he remarked that it has continued to convey the real mood of the masses.

Noted economist Dr Jayanta Madhab recalled his association with the Asam Bani and cited humorous incidents from his experiences. He praised the weekly for moulding a large number of writers and journalists, which was a challenging task. He graciously remembered the contribution of all those who had passed away, but who had contributed to the growth of the Asam Bani.

Also speaking on the occasion, Dilip Chandan, the present editor of the weekly said that it continued to enjoy a special place in the hearts of many people long after its inception. He sought the support of the reading public so that the Asam Bani could further maintain its glorious tradition.

In his presidential address, Chandra Prasad Saikia, former president of Asam Sahitya Sabha, and a former editor of Asam Bani briefly mentioned the formative period of the weekly and appreciated the roles of RG Baruah and Satis Chandra Kakati. For him, the golden jubilee of the Asam Bani was a proud moment for the entire Assamese community.

Today’s function at Rabindra Bhawan also witnessed prizes being given away to the various winners of a short story competition and an essay competition. Those were organized to coincide with the golden jubilee celebrations.

(The Assam Tribune,13Feb,)