Tuesday 12 March 2013

Press Note

PR/16/2012-2013                                                                           12th March, 2013                                                                                                                         
                                                                   Press Note
                                                by Justice Markandey Katju, Chairman,
                                                         Press Council of India

                  For quite some time an issue has arisen about the need for a qualification for entry into the profession of journalism.  In the lawyers profession an LLB Degree as well as registration in a Bar Council is required.  Similarly, for entry into the medical profession the necessary qualification is an MBBS Degree and also registration with the Medical Council. For becoming a teacher a teacher’s training certificate/degree is required. Many other professions have the requirement of some qualification before one can enter that profession.

         However, at present there is no qualification for entry into the profession of journalism.  Hence very often persons with little  or inadequate training in journalism enter the profession, and this often leads to negative effects, because such untrained persons often do not maintain high standards of journalism.

       For quite some time, therefore, it has been felt that there must be some legal qualification before one can enter the profession of journalism.  There are no doubt many institutions which impart teaching in journalism (some of which is very unsatisfactory) but there is as yet no legal requirement for having any qualification before entering the profession.
      Since the media has an important influence on the lives of the people, the time has now come when some qualification should be prescribed by law.  Accordingly I constitute the following team which is requested to consider all aspects of the matter and submit a report to me at an early date suggesting the qualifications a person should have before he can be allowed to enter the profession of journalism.

    On receipt of the report I intend to place it before the Full Press council, and after getting its approval shall forward it to the Government for initiating suitable legislation for this purpose.
    The members of the team as follows:
1)     Shri Shravan Garg, Member, Press Council of India                     - Convenor
2)     Shri  Rajeev Sabade, Member, Press Council of India                  -  Member
3)     Dr. Ujjwala Barve, Associate Professor, Department of Communication &
Journalism, University of Pune                                                         - Member

          The team is requested to submit its report at an early date.  The Central and all State Governments and Journalism Departments and institutes in India are requested to extend all co-operations to the team. Smt. Vibha Bhargava, Secretary, Press Council of India is directed to provide all logistics and other support to the team.

                                                                                      (Justice Markandey Katju)
 Press council of India



  1. one more addition to plethora of laws and remembering these laws is in itself is an herculean task... Sir, don't u think that laws should be minimum and judicial process should also be made simple.

  2. Gr8 initiative long overdue.
    Lack of understanding and nowadays, willingness to understand also and the pressure of one-upmanship, pressure of advertising & TRP ratings is making the profession a tough and bring lot of disrepute - Business of News is too compelling.
    As a former journalist - it pains me to see the profession withering with such blatant violation of basic rules to function. Hope your attempt garners sufficient support and some amount of basic guidelines are put in place for the profession to become truly Fourth Pillar and not medium that doesn't get ample respect.

  3. A very brave move Sir. This is what people of India needs not only in journalism but in every field such as politics, corporates, media and education. The caste system is destroying people'e lives. Sir in USA the african americans are considered backward class, they are given preferential in government jobs but mostly in security guards, receptionist,police but they never put backward class in a position where decision making is related to country's policies, administrative reforms. These backward class illiterates never comes on merit based and spoil the system. Similarly same in Australasia with aborigins and maori people but those countries are first world.

    Now with media. What is happening with india media these even qualified people are reading newspaper of usa and they copy and paste the same article. Few days back one rediff.com journalist took the same articled from west and published on rediff thacouple should watch porn together. In west porn and prostitution is legal in India is it illegal and unholy since it is religious country. Also tell Arnab Goswami dont behave like Rakhi Sawant and try to show by shouting and behaving like hooligan you will change the dimension of this country. And last prosecute those journalist who write about Sunny Leone who is in India promoting her adult website via twitter (background home page on twitter you see mention all her sex websites)and use bollywood name to sell her porn movies in usa. Ambika soni broadcasting and information minister who is lethargic and lazy bumb needs to warn all channels dont promote chaste and characterless people like Sunny Leone and Veena Malik else BJP will kick out this inefficient Congress if they sit quite and dont work on the interest of youth and nation here.

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  5. Dr. Mr. Katju,

    As you are better aware than I am, there are various kinds of journalists. I will talk of two - those handling economic and public finance issues and those handling international affairs. It is not difficult to understand that you need people with degree / experience in areas like economics, public policy, diplomacy and international relations for these specialist fields. Will a uniform degree, the kind of which you seem to propose, ever help get you the kind of expertise needed for such specialist functions?

    After reading a number of your articles, what strikes me is the generalization you are prone to on the basis of limited information. It never hurt anyone to be a little more detailed in one's approach.

    Hope you and your committee members will find some substance in this argument and at least give it a thought. Otherwise, good luck to one and all!

    Sincerely yours,

    1. First of all it looks you are from the media field thats why you taking it personally. India journalist are not only poor in handing economic and social affairs but even internal and international affairs. The only good affairs they can follow is reporting Tendulkar 100th century and Kareena dining with Saif at Oberoi and what Kareena thinks about her shoes?

      You see there reporting skills are so poor that as soon as some terror activities or intelligence failure happens in India they relate that with ISI or LET or IM and they do it and they lie with such ease it makes 90% semi illiterates believable.
      The second issue is recently there is plagiarism happening in media which is violation of international media regulations and code of conduct. I see complete copy paste of west articles title " Sex at beach can be exciting" Now what message they want to give to Indian citizen go and take a girl a have sex near juhu beach at mumbai so that police can round you up and fine. Indian culture is different and these uncreative creatures must confined themselves to indian culture and follow india law
      Last is paid media and negative publicity. For journalist there is no legal case or defamation case possible. In UK when a newspaper filed a case against Mohd Asif they had to prove else their press would have been confiscated. You need to have fear that action will be taken
      Media news should be monitored for these morons who dont know their social obligations and write all junks
      Arnab Goswami should be send to mental asylum to have proper check up of his brain to follow proper code and conduct else everyone will follow his animal instinct and behave like Rakhi Sawant and create eye balls
      Last fair and free media must restraint while reporting international news. No neighbour of India has good relationship with India. It is because of these idiots sitting in news channel room and reporting junk and instead of uniting nation they do division

    2. For your information, I am not remotely related to anything to do with media. Your conclusion is based on the false assumption that I took something seriously. I have argued on logic and nothing else.

      Warm regards,

  6. Sir, I appreciate your intention behind this move. It is unfortunate that this day has come. But, being a journalist I don’t think that this move would be sufficient to reform the ‘journalism’.
    Journalism is more about state of mind and heart, rather than the academics and exams. I don’t think legal-qualification/ registrations would help to inculcate humane, sensibility and non-corrupt mentality among the professionals. Despite having such criteria for doctors, lawyers and teachers etc, we do find misdeeds at various levels. The fate of journalism-registration will be no different I feel. As far as journalistic ethics is concerned, it is taught in the syllabus and it has no relevance in today’s journalism.
    There are various media-houses, organizations and accreditations for media-persons with more or less similar ethical guidelines, rules and regulations. But so far we don’t find any action against defaulter journalists.
    Moreover there are no criteria to own media-house; as a result media has become a business avenue for the capitalists. Despite learning the ethics and having registration (proposed), a journalist has to do what his masters want. Unless PCI don’t take any initiative to curb media-business and to inculcate the sense of accountability among both -owners and journalists- , we can’t expect much from registration process.

  7. आप की तरफ से उठाया गया एक सराहनीय निर्णय है। पर पत्रकारिता का स्तर सुधारने के लिए सिर्फ पत्रकारिता की डिग्री को अनिवार्य बनाना ही एक मात्र हल नहीं है। इसके साथ ही उन संस्थानों को भी पत्रकारिता को एक सेवा के रूप में लेना होगा जिन्होंने अब सिर्फ एजेंडा सेटिंग पर आधरित पत्रकारिता कर रहे हैं। मीडिया पर अब कुछ समूहों का एकाधिकार हो गया है। इसके चलते पत्रकारिता के विभिन्न माध्यमों में से सेवा का भाव हट गया है और सिर्फ मुनाफा कमाने की होड़ लगी हुई है। प्रिंट मीडिया के लिए हर तीन महीने पर आने वाले पाठक सर्वेक्षण और टेलीविजन के लिए आने वाली टीआरपी ही पैमाना बन कर रहे गए हैं।

  8. Then don't you think that all members of PCI, including yourself, must have academic credentials in journalism? If you don't have academic training in journalism, then by your own admission, you are not qualified for your position.

  9. Dear Sir,

    If India is to really progress, we need qualifications for our legislators. If an "angoothachaap" can run entire administrative machinery and make a joke of constitutional commitments of FRs and DPSPs,then why can't less qualified people report news? Powerful people like you should direct their energies towards cleaning the top echelons of Indian political system. If you raise the demand, people will follow.

    Please do not trouble common people like journalists. If you cannot go after the powerful, then no need of "satyam bruyat" and big hyperboles.

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