Introduction should explain about the role media play as a guarantor and protector of an informed citizenry, which is important in a democracy like India. However, the 2017 World Press Freedom Index by Reporters without Borders ranks India at 136 out of 180 countries.
Next, in the main body mention about the pros of media freedom. An independent media acts as an important check on government and administrator, raises voice against social ill, internal vigilance against corruption etc.
Further, mention about cons. Paid news, deteriorating standards of reporting, favouring the political party in power, fake news, no news on some of the grave issues like beef ban, cow vigilantism, mob lynching, killing of innocent by mob in the name of cow protectionism, Going extra mile for gaining TRPs, Advent of social media led to competition for instant and quick news and reporting without first checking the facts. For example: Reporting of GPS Nano chips in new 500 and 2000 notes etc.
Bring conclusion citing the lack of effective laws and regulation to regulate media affairs. Please be balanced while concluding without taking very extreme steps in any direction.
Freedom of the press was not created by the Founding Fathers for the convenience of either the politicians or the press. It was created as a guarantor and protector of an informed citizenry, without which India’s democracy is under threat. The 2017 World Press Freedom Index by Reporters without Borders ranks India at 136 out of 180 countries.
Pros of media freedom:
- An independent press and news-media acts as an important check on Government and Administrators.
- The duty of a free press is to raise voice against any social ill or wrong. It has been said that internal vigilance is the price of liberty.
- They raise voice against any dictatorship, corruption, and malpractices.
- The people of the country are kept informed of what is happening in the Thus, freedom of press and media is the necessary pre-condition to the fulfillment of democratic ideologies.
Cons of media freedom:
- The Indian media is often criticised for its deteriorating reporting standards, jaundiced coverage of politics and regurgitation of online trends as prime time
- Over the past few years our media has become the mouthpiece of the party in Coupled with the fact the corporate owners of media houses share close links with the government, the Indian media has tragically lost its voice.
- Fake news, paid news in the time of elections to gain extra mileage have become reality; The Election Commission is reported to have identified more than 1,400 cases of paid news between 2009 and
- Serious issues like the beef ban, the crisis in Kashmir, dissent in universities and even the unrest in societies where Dalits – the lowest level of India’s caste system – have been discriminated or killed, have received scant mention in media
- In recent times the race to gain TRP’s has led to emergence of sensational news by the press for example too much attention was given to Panchkula Baba over Doklam
- There is also unwillingness across the media to robustly challenge the official narrative on key issues partly out of its own failings but also largely out of fear of being denied access to those in
- Advent of social media led to competition for instant and quick news and reporting without first checking the facts.
- For example: Reporting of GPS Nano chips in new 500 and 2000
- In recent times in absence of weak regulation, lack of self-control, degradation of ethical and professional values is making the press a tool used by political and corporate bodies for their own self-interest.
In a democracy, there should be some medium through which people may raise their grievances and get their grievances addressed. Such platforms are being provided by media. Therefore, Media should be more responsible to the press freedom and should provide only authentic news as it is the fourth pillar of democracy.