Media should self-introspect: Vinod Mehta

Mumbai: Veteran journalist and Outlook group editorial advisor Vinod Mehta has asked the media to do self-introspection and if necessary, self-correction in the coverage of sensitive news.

The race for news is in the right direction but the media should do self-introspection and self-correction whenever needed, he said during a panel discussion hosted by eminent television journalist Arnab Goswami on the occasion of the annual Mumbai Press Club awards here last night.

Kumar Ketkar, chief editor of Marathi daily Dainik Divya Marathi, said media should not only focus on urban news but should also highlight rural issues. He said people in rural areas regularly watch TV channels.

Star TV CEO Uday Shankar also agreed with Mehta and Ketkar that the race for news was in the right direction.

Vinod Mehta, who was given the lifetime achievement award comprising trophy and Rs one lakh for his significant contribution to journalism, said he learnt his first lessons in the profession in Mumbai. He said he owed a lot to Mumbai because the city had given a lot of job opportunities to him. Mehta also thanked the Press Club for honouring him and said, "To me this award is more than Padma Shree."

Eminent journalist Madhu Shetye was also awarded Rs one lakh and trophy for his contribution to the development of Press Club and fighting for rights of journalists.

Union Minister for HRD, Communication and IT, Kapil Sibal, who presented the awards, said the media had played a significant role in protecting democracy. Media had exposed major scams not only in India but also in other countries as well, he added.

Mumbai Press Club president Gurbir Singh outlined the history of the club and the need for honouring journalists. He lamented that attacks on journalists were on rise and the government was not doing anything to protect the members of the fourth pillar of democracy.

Several journalists covering various beats like crime, politics, health and environment, entertainment, sports and business were awarded cash prizes for best stories. Anusha Subramaniam from Business Today, Nagaraj Gollapudi from ESPN Cric Info, Gaurav Jain and Ashish Khetan from Tehelka, Rafique Bagdadi from Business India and Rishi Shah and John Samuel Raja from Economic Times won cash awards of Rs 75,000 each.