JNA delegation calls on Joint Director, projects demands

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[ September 01, 2017 ] Jammu: Despite claiming to have framed a concrete policy for distribution of advertisements to all the news papers registered, department of information has thrown all the set norms to dust bin and are fully engaged in appeasing their blue eyed and relatives over the interest of editors and employees, thus pushing them to brink of starvation. In this connection, Jammu Newspapers Association (JNA) called upon joint director (Jt Dir) to discuss the discriminatory distribution of ads. While highlighting the facts JNA members expressed discontent as there has been no well defined policy to justify the release of quantum of ads to be issued to various news papers. Citing examples members said that some news papers whose circulation is not more than ten copies are getting nearly 800cms while colored papers having more than five thousand circulation are getting 140 cms. Members on the basis of RTI replies said that as per advertisement policy old as well as new of 2016 gross violations had been taking place and policy as made public is not being implemented in letter and spirit. They informed that there is no yard stick known to anyone as to how the advertisements are being released in favor of news papers and it just not only amounts to unlawful but also an arbitrary methodology which could increase miseries’ of news papers owners as well as employees, because, this mechanism could lead to huge unemployment in the state. Members urged the concerned authorities to form a transparent system instead of appeasing relatives and blue eyed on pick and chose tactics. They also urged that record and list of publications should be displayed in digitalized in accordance with alphabetic or circulation wise so the prevailing confusion is removed. They also hinted at Government Order No: 28-IDof 2017 dated 3-8-2017 regarding prohibiting release of ads to three news papers. Members expressed serious concern over the violation of Supreme Court guidelines with impunity by the department. Upon this, Joint Director, Jammu extended assurance for implementing policy by letter and spirit. Jt Dir also assured all the grievances would be addressed in short span of time for the mechanism is being developed. They also promised all possible help for the betterment of news papers in the division. JNA delegation was led by President Sardari Lal Bhagat while Vice President Surinder Sharma, General Secretary Pritan Singh Saini, Advisior Rattan Singh Gill and Treasurer Amit Sahani were also accompanying the president. It is pertinent to remind that 467 newspapers and periodicals including 271 in Jammu and 196 in Kashmir division are presently empanelled with DIPR for release of government advertisements. The DIPR released a payment of around Rs 31 crore to the newspapers and periodicals on account of advertisements during the fiscal 2016-17 while for the current financial year the advertisement budget is to the tune of Rs 30 crore.