Maharashtra govt mum on declaring journalists as frontline workers

Mumbai: Despite a strong pitch by media persons and the bodies representing them, the state government is silent on declaring journalists as front-line workers. Besides, the state is also ignoring a demand to allow them travel by Mumbai suburban train network.

Various representations have been made in recent time, from the Directorate General of Information and Public Relations (DGIPR) to the Chief Minister’s office but no positive response is coming in, say office bearers of prominent organisations that represent media persons.

A demand for the vaccination of journalists on a priority basis has also been made by them, but a response is still awaited.

Senior officials such as the Chief Secretary have been approached, but they are not forthcoming, said an office-bearer from Mantralaya Vidhanmandal Vartahar Sangh that represents over 150 media persons engaged in the coverage of state administration.

"We have aired our demands to Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and senior officials from the CMO but yet to receive any response," he said.

Similar demands have been made by the media persons covering Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) and the crime reporters association.

Senior journalists and prominent political faces too have echoed their demands and made tweets tagging CMO but that too have gone unheard, say media persons.

Despite a number of media persons died while fighting Coronavirus such demands have not been considered on priority which baffles the community.

Attempts to contact senior officials failed despite calls and text messages. An official in the know of the developments said on condition of anonymity that the present issue with three demands is a complex one and it was under consideration.

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Free Press Journal