New Delhi: Navaid Hamid, President All India Muslim Majlis-e-Mashwarat (aimmm)-Umbrella body of the Indian Muslim organisations- wrote a letter to the Lok Sabha speaker slamming her press remark, she made. Sumitra Mahajan had said that the ‘journalists should sometimes avoid telling the unpleasant truth’ while speaking at a function organised by RSS-affiliated Indraprastha Vishwa Samvad Kendra on June 21.
“… whatever is said should be said in beautiful language. A lot can be communicated to the government using such language. Satyam Bruyat Priyam Bruyat, Na Bruyat Apriyam Satyam (Tell the truth. Tell nice things. Do not tell the unpleasant truth)— this is also required sometimes,” Mahajan had said.
President aimmm criticised her and said that India’s Parliament is the largest democracy and its transparency is famous worldwide. Such a remark should not come from a stature of its presiding officer.
“I was pained to know that a person of your stature has suggested press to abstain from reporting unpleasant truth in the national interest while addressing participants in a programme organized by a offshoot of RSS, Indraprastha Vishwa Samvad Kendra. You represent the saner voice in the country and as a presiding officer of the world’s largest parliament, which is adored for its transparency and high-quality debate, has an onerous responsibility to ensure freedom of speech and press. India has achieved the distinction of being the largest democracy in the world because we allowed the free press in the country to report events unbiased. If news gets manipulated and twisted; it loses its sheen. In a free and democratic world, we need to maintain journalistic ethics and carry on duties objectivity,” the letter reads.
Hamid said that if the press is bound to different conditions, the democracy will suffer. The press should be free from any kind of censorship.
“This may not be possible if the press is chained and conditions imposed. This will result in the collapse of an edifice of democracy. If the press is asked to avoid reporting shortcomings of the government, it represents signs of press censorship. There are some forces in the country, who are bent on controlling the press for their political gains and objectives,” he wrote.
While showing hope in her, aimmm president closed the letter on a positive note and said: “But I am hopeful that as a seasoned politician you will always follow dharma of free press as that is the key to success for our country’s prosperity and progress. This will ensure democratic polity in true spirit.”