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Emotions should not overshadow reason: President on returning awards

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New Delhi: Prestigious awards should be cherished and emotions should not overrun reason, President Pranab Mukherjee on Monday said during the National Press Day celebrations.

His comment came as several artists recently returned their awards blaming the government for rising intolerance in the country.

Speaking at a function organised by the Press Council of India here, Mukherjee said: “Prestigious awards are a public recognition, of talent, merit and hard work, by peers and leaders in the profession.

Such awards should be cherished and valued by those who receive them.”

“Sensitive minds sometimes get disturbed by some incidents in society. Emotions should not overrun reason and disagreement should be expressed through debate and discussion,” he said.

“We must, as proud Indians, have confidence in the idea of India and the values and principles enshrined in our constitution. India has always been able to self-correct whenever such a need has arisen.”

The president said journalists must bring to public notice the array of ills and deprivations that continue to beset a large number of people.

“The power of the media should be used to reset our moral compass and promote liberalism, humanism and decency in public life. While opinion is free, facts should be sacred,” the president said.

“Caution should be exercised in passing judgements, especially on matters where the due process of law is yet to be completed. We must never forget that careers and reputations take years to build but only minutes to demolish,” he added.

Mukherjee said the media fraternity of India were not only providers of news but also educators which empower the citizens and strengthens the democratic framework of the country.

Referring to the main theme of this year’s National Press Day discussion, the president said cartoons and caricatures were good stress busters for the viewing public as well as those featured in them.

“The cartoonist captures the mood of the time and his art lies in being able to lampoon without hurting, caricature without distorting and to say with a few strokes of the brush what lengthy articles fail to express. Jawaharlal Nehru, our first prime minister, used to repeatedly tell V. Shankar, the doyen of Indian cartoonists, ‘Don’t spare me, Shankar’,” he said.

Mukherjee also gave away National Awards for excellence in journalism on the occasion. Among this year’s awardees is IANS Agartala bureau chief Sujit Chakraborty.

(IANS)

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India successfully test fires n-capable Agni-V ballistic missile

The missile was earlier tested successfully in 2012, 2013, 2015 and 2016.

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Nirbhay
The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) sources said the Nirbhay missile test was "successful".(Representative image) VOA
  • India successfully tests the Agni-V ballistic missile on Thursday
  • This was the fifth test that missile underwent
  • With this success, India is now in ranks with US, UK, China and Russia

India on Thursday successfully tests fired its indigenously developed intercontinental surface-to-surface nuclear-capable ballistic missile Agni-V — the most potent and with the longest range in the Agni series – that can reach targets as far as Beijing.

The test took place at the Abdul Kalam Island facility off the Odisha coast. Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tweeted about its success, congratulating its makers DRDO, the armed forces and the defence industry.

You may also like: Ballistic missile Agni-IV test fired as part of user trial

India has many high tech and powerful missiles to its name. Wikimedia Commons
India has many high tech and powerful missiles to its name. Wikimedia Commons

She said the successful test of the 5,000-km-range missile that can carry a one-tonne warhead, was “a major boost to the defence capabilities of our country”.

“The Made in India canistered missile, having three stages of propulsion, was successfully test fired,” she tweeted.

Developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), the Agni-V is the most advanced version of the Agni series, part of the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme that started in the 1960s.

The missile was earlier tested successfully in 2012, 2013, 2015 and 2016.

This was the fifth test of the missile and likely to be its first user trial, though there was no official word on it.

India is developing new technologies everyday to strengthen its defence.
India is developing new technologies every day to strengthen its defence.

Thursday’s test brings the missile closer to its induction in the tri-service Strategic Forces Command.

The missile has a much longer shelf life, with its container being made of special steel that absorbs the blast of the takeoff.

In the canisterised launch, a gas generator inside ejects the missile up to a height of about 30 metres. A motor is then ignited to fire the missile.

Also Read: Nikki Haley says North Korea Could Face Stronger Sanctions due to its 7th Missile test in 2017

With this missile, India joins the super-exclusive club of ICBM (missiles with a range of over 5,000-5,500 km) capable countries of the US, Russia, the UK, France and China. IANS