Union Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Dr L. Murugan today delivered the keynote address at Global News Forum 2022 meeting in New Delhi. Addressing a gathering of representatives of various news organisations from the Asia-Pacific region, Dr Murugan noted that the gathering was happening on the auspicious occasion of Navratri. The Minister said that it is in times of crises television news channels must become prudent and truth and trust must become the maxim to abide by. The topic of the Global News Forum ‘Truth and Trust at times of Crisis’ is very apt and its importance in increased manifolds following the COVID19 pandemic that was also referred to as an infodemic, he said.
Dr Murugan further said that the forum is an excellent platform to exchange ideas and experiences. That media holds prime importance in a democracy as its fourth pillar was underlined by Dr Murugan when he said Prasar Bharati played a key role in information dissemination during the pandemic. He further highlighted that where on the one hand fake news and misinformation spread fast during crisis and creation of awareness against this evil has become equally important on the other.
Mr Javad Mottaghi, Secretary General of Asia Pacific Broadcasting Union highlighted that ABU is the biggest broadcasting union with 250 members in over 70 countries and the ability to reach more than 3 billion audience. Mr Mottagi underlined that Asia-Pacific is a diverse region with both big and small countries, countries with different cultures, economy and governance systems. However, diversity was not a threat but an opportunity, he added, saying that Union focusses on its commonalities and respects diversity.
Shri Mayank Agarwal, Chief Executive Officer, Prasar Bharati, said that Prasar Bharati appreciates the role being played by ABU as a forum for promoting collective interest of television and radio broadcasters and encouraging cooperation between broadcasters in the region. He expressed his pleasure that the meeting was taking place physically after 3 years after the last meeting in 2019 in Istanbul, Turkey.
Prasar Bharati has always lived up to the high standards of public broadcasting and has been valued by people for its objectivity. Speaking on the activities undertaken during the pandemic, Shri Agarwal credited Doordarshan and All India Radio for actively confronting the menace of fake news during the pandemic, and informed the gathering that a Fact Check Unit was also established under Press Information Bureau. He further informed the audience that a phone in programme ‘Doctors Speak’ was broadcast in 20 regional languages where doctors responded to queries from audience. The broader media fraternity, he said, was crucial in helping the country weather the pandemic.
About Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU)
ABU was established in 1964 as a non-profit, non- governmental, non-political, professional association with mandate to assist the development of broadcasting organisations in the region currently Headquartered at Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. ABU promotes the collective interests of television and radio broadcasters as well as key industry players and also facilitate regional and international media cooperation for members. It has over 253 members in over 67 countries in Pacific region, Asia (South east, North, South, Central), Middle East, Europe, North Africa and North America, reaching a potential audience of about 2 billion people.
Doordarshan (DD) & All India Radio (AIR) both are Full Members of ABU. All India Radio was a founding member of the ABU in the year 1964 while Doordarshan joined ABU in the year 1976.
Global News Forum 2022 is the ABU’s flagship three days annual NEWS event hosting around 80 foreign participants from the field of Media & Journalism from different broadcasting organizations. Discussions are being held on various important broadcasting and journalism related issues prevailing across the globe in relevance to the theme of this year event i.e. “Truth and trust at times of crisis”. The Global News Forum started is being held from 3rd to 5th October 2022.