Don’t publish ‘false, manipulated’ news on Ram Mandir: Press Council to print media

Coverage must not ‘disturb communal harmony’, the council said in a press release.

WrittenBy:NL Team
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The print media must refrain from publishing any content on the Ram temple consecration that may be “false or manipulated or has the potential to disturb communal harmony or public order”, the Press Council of India said yesterday.

In a press release, the Press Council said the information and broadcasting ministry had “observed that certain unverified, provocative and fake messages are being spread” after the consecration on January 22. This was despite the ministry issuing an advisory on January 20 instructing media platforms to “maintain adherence to norms and regulations”.

So, the press release urged media houses to pay “attention” to provisions under the Cable Television Network Regulation Act and the Press Council Act. This includes exercising caution on news that is of “paramount national interest”. 

It is also the “duty of the newspaper” to ensure that the “tone, spirit and language of a write-up is not objectionable, provocative, against the unity and integrity of the country, spirit of the constitution, seditious and inflammatory in nature or designed to promote communal disharmony”.

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It’s unclear precisely what media coverage the press release is referring to. Newslaundry has been on the ground in Ayodhya and Big Media was fully absorbed in kar seva – live shows, elaborate sets, flex boards welcoming Ram’s ‘return’, and a media circus. Watch our video for more.

Editorials and front pages of newspapers, on the other hand, detailed the celebrations surrounding the consecration but also struck cautious notes. Read all about it here.

This report was published with AI assistance.

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