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Rashtrapati Bhavan : 31.08.2013

The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee inaugurated the valedictory function of the Golden Jubilee Celebrations of Kerala Union of Working Journalists (KUWJ) today (August 31, 2013) at Rashtrapati Bhavan.

Speaking on the occasion, the President pointed out that many of our national leaders were journalists like Mahatma Gandhi, Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Lala Lajpat Rai, Surenderanath Banerjee etc. The history of journalism in India is closely linked to the history of our freedom struggle.

The deportation of Swadeshbhimani Ramakrishna Pillai in 1910, the banning of ‘Kesari’ in the 1930s, the confiscation of the properties of Malayala Manorama in 1938 and the arrest of Mathrubhumi Editor, K.A. Damodara Menon for his support of the Quit India Movement in 1942 are all landmarks in India’s freedom struggle as well as the history of the media in Kerala. The President called upon the journalists across the country to continue to uphold the glorious traditions set by their predecessors.

The President said Indian journalists have fought not just for the freedom of the press but also for the freedom of our nation and to free society from social prejudice, casteism, discrimination etc. The journalists who supported the freedom struggle did not spare the leaders once India became independent and the leaders became part of the Government. He called upon the media to work with conscience, commitment and conviction nurturing at the same time self- discipline and restraint in their reporting.

The President complimented the Kerala Union of Working Journalists for its contributions towards responsible journalism over the last 50 years and wished the journalistic fraternity of Kerala every success in the future.

Among the dignitaries present on the occasion were Union Minister for Defence, Shri A.K. Antony, and Minister of State (I/C) for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, Prof. K.V. Thomas.

This release issued at 1405 hrs