New Delhi: In another sign of its disenchantment with the media, the AAP government has decided to closely monitor all the news channels while Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal asked it to spare wives and children of party leaders from being dragged into controversies. In a first, an order has been issued to the Directorate of Information and Publicity (DIP) to monitor the news channels from 9 AM to 11 PM. DIP officials till now used to only keep records of newspapers cuttings related to the government.
“DIP officials have been asked to start monitoring the content of news channels related to the government and send a daily report on these contents broadcast by them to Chief Minister’s Office (CMO),” a top government official told PTI today.
The order by the AAP government came days after Kejriwal accused the media of being part of a “conspiracy to finish off AAP” and advocated its “public trial”. Continuing his attack on a section of the media, Kejriwal accused it of maligning AAP and singling out children and wives of party leaders, He said a section of the media was running a persistent campaign to defame AAP after it got an overwhelming mandate in the Delhi Assembly polls and that henceforth, AAP will maintain silence on issues other than those relating to government.
Kejriwal’s comments today came in the wake of a complaint by a woman party volunteer accusing senior leader Kumar Vishwas of not rebutting “rumours” about an illicit liaison with her following which he and his wife was issued summons by the Delhi Commission for Women.
“Few media houses are maligning our party’s image day and night in the past few months. I am deeply hurt. So we have decided to go silent. We will answer questions only on government and work being done by us. Have no replies to other questions,” he said.
He also expressed anguish over media purportedly “dragging” the families of the party leaders in the public domain. “Is this journalism?” “Your fight is with us. Please spare our wives and children. How long we will continue to give explanations,” he said.
Recently, at the launch of a news portal, Kejriwal alleged that a very large section of the media had accepted “supari” for finishing off AAP. “There can be a public trial. There can be 8-10 spots in Delhi where we can collect a group of people and show the erroneous clip. That way we can start a ‘janta ka trial’,” he added.