We will continue the stir till fulfilment
of our demands," said young journalist Birupakshya Tripathy adding that the journalists are
forced to go for agitation as the state government simply ignored the
"genuine and just" demands of the scribes.
“While the state government claimed to have made schemes for people from
mother’s womb till graveyard, it preferred ignoring the journalists working
day-in and day out to cover news about different government programme and
schemes,” said a release issued after the meeting.
Agitating journalists pointed out that no action has been taken to
redress the grievances of the fraternity in spite of several attempts
during last 14 years to draw attention of the government towards various
issues of working journalists.
Besides the union government of India, state governments of Tamil Nadu,
Kerala, Punjab, Delhi, West Bengal, Tripura and Chhattisgarh have
announced a host of welfare schemes for journalists. In contrary, the
Odisha government rather stopped certain facilities given by the state
to journalists. While cash starved West Bengal government announced
different welfare schemes for its journalists, cash surplus Odisha
government completely ignored the journalist community, they said. The
agitating journalists also pointed out that they are the victims of
discrimination by the state government.
The demands raised by working journalists of Odisha included immediate
issuance of health card for scribes, pension, government accommodation,
simplification of norms to avail benefits of journalist welfare fund and
a few other genuine expectations.
The meeting resolved to submit fresh memoranda to the Governor, Speaker
of OLA, Chief Minister, Leader of Opposition and Chief Secretary before
launching the protest.
The meeting was attended by reporters, photo-journalists, video-
journalists representing different newspapers, magazines, news agencies,
TV Channels and news websites.