Media in Nagaland
[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he journalists in Nagaland are on the receiving end for one thing or the other. The accolades and benefits their counter-parts in the neighbouring States of Manipur, Mizoram, Assam and elsewhere enjoy have been missing in the State. Citing an example, for several years, if not for decades, what government benefits the journalists in other States have been enjoying, the Nagaland media fraternity is still reminding the state government to implement them. As recent as yesterday the Nagaland Press Association (NPA) apprised chief minister TR Zeliang about the immediate needs of the media fraternity in the State. It appeared that the state government was not ‘aware’ of most of the journalists’ benefits. The NPA delegation pointed out to the chief minister the benefits (Journalists Welfare Schemes) journalists in other states are enjoying. The chief minister assured the media fraternity that the state government would do what needs to be done.Coming to Manipur, besides the various media welfare schemes, journalists and their immediate family members enjoy the medical discounts even in private hospitals, not to talk of government hospitals. The journalists in Manipur are never deprived of the annual excursion fund by the State government. One indication the government values the media in Manipur is that in any critical situation senior journalists are consulted by the State government. Journalists’ opinions are accommodated in other policy makings in the States like Mizoram, Assam and Manipur.
Yes, we understand the media in Nagaland is young compared to its neighbouring States. But it is not that young to be still in the stage where we are to make aware of our welfare schemes/benefits to the State government.
Another sorry figure in the working of media here is the lack of supports and comforts from the civil society organizations the journalists received. When media persons are assaulted or threatened by certain elements we seldom see civil society organizations or frontal bodies coming out to support the victims. We are left to resolve the critical situation by ourselves. In the case of Mizoram and Manipur or elsewhere, the civil society organizations expressed their gratitude to the media houses for their service to the society by way of intervention whenever journalists are victimized.
Media persons especially in the North East region are working under extreme situation. They chose this profession not for anything else but for the love to serve the society. In Sun or in rain the journalists will not hesitate to rush to the place where any organization wants them to be at any given time (convenience of the organizations for press conference). But sadly, there has been no reflection to the yeomen service of the media persons in the State. The Nagaland journalists have been deprived of their ‘shares’ for quite a long time now. We don’t demand, anyway.