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Question-1:  The declining rank of India in the World Press Freedom Index is an indication of degrading free press in the country. Discuss.


Answer:  Recently, the World Press Freedom Index was published by Reporters without Borders. It showed that press freedom across the world, including in India was declining at an alarming rate. India witnessed a downgrade in its rank.

Reasons for declining rank

  • Attack on journalists
    The attacks on journalists have gained ground across length and breadth of the country. They are unable to perform their duty honestly due to fear for their lives.
  • Use of martial laws against journalists
    Many journalists are charged with martial laws such as sedition for their work. They are jailed and made to run from pillar to post to get rid of charges.
  • Cancelling culture
    Many journalists face wrath of a section of public with opposing views. They are made to retract their work eventhough they have right to free speech.
  • Toeing government line
    Journalists have been shackled with invisible chains by the governments. They have to toe the government’s line if they have to continue working.

Measures to improve free press

  • Security to journalists
    There has to be a law that provides protection to journalists and punish individuals guilty of attacking journalists and their work.
  • Respect diverse opinion
  • Tolerance has to be instilled in public. They must be ready to accept diverse opinion, eventhough it goes against their principal belief. This can also strengthen our democracy.

Thus, the onus is not just on the government to maintain free speech. Tolerance and criticism must prosper to uphold principles of journalism.

Tags: GS 2 ( Polity and Governance)

By- Raghunandan

Updated on 11 May 2022 |   Added on .09 May 2022  |  by admin