Monday January 22, 2018
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Senior journalists, authors slam scribes for ‘selife with Modi’

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New Delhi: The primary job of journalists as the Fourth Estate of a democracy is to ask tough questions to powers-that-be and in order to do so it is essential that they maintain some distance from the latter (duh).

The logic is simple: if we made friends with those we are supposed to question, we would not be able to perform our foremost duty of holding them accountable. Or so we are taught in journalism schools.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi organized a Diwali Milan function for mediapersons on Saturday at the BJP Headquarters wherein the journalists could be seen jostling and vying with each other to take selfies with the former. The pictures quickly went viral on social media, especially on Twitter, where people began raising questions on the lowering standards and ethics of Indian media.

Senior journalist Nihal Singh while speaking with NewsGram took a dim view of the bonhomie and mob mentality displayed by Modi and the journalists at the BJP Headquarters.

“I think it’s funny and at the same time shameful too. If students indulge in such things, it’s understandable. But not for journalists who are supposed to perform the important task of holding the elected representatives accountable to the people of India,” Singh said.

The fact that there was no question and answer session showed that Modi wanted a controlled environment and one-way communication. This is how he is, the senior journalist added.

“I have read books written about Modi and the best was one written by Nilanjan Mukhopadhyay that is ‘Narendra Modi: The Man, The Times’. At a certain stage when the author came close to know the real Modi, the latter cut him off completely.”

Nilanjan Mukhopadhyay seems to concur with Singh. NewsGram spoke to the Modi biographer to understand his perspective on the issue.

“There are two kinds of journalists in India: those who take selfies and those who don’t. The lure and fascination for power and inclination to flaunt one’s political connections is stronger in the former. Modi is only obliging such journalists; he is more than happy with a one-way dialogue process. Yet I feel Modi’s romance with the media seems to be almost over if we compare this event with last year’s ‘Diwali Milan’. The enthusiasm was lacking,” Mukhopadhyay said.

Prabhakar Kumar, head of the CMS Media Lab, told NewsGram that such instances make it tough for the journalists to do their real job i.e. asking questions.

“They ought to maintain some distance. Journalists these days wish to flaunt their closeness to ministers and thus their value and worth. Nira Radia case is an apt example in this regard. In a way, we could say that media is not a mirror of the society anymore and this is not good for democracy.

“For instance, in London BBC reporters asked him tough questions like on the ‘growing intolerance’ in the country. Can Indian journalists question him in this regard? It is a pity that he is open to questions in a foreign land, not in India. This is how Modi operates. Even during 2014 Lok Sabha polls, he strategically gave interviews to selected journalists and media houses. He’s the one who chooses and journalists are only obliging him.”

Many senior journalists NewsGram spoke to were of the opinion that ‘Diwali Milan’ reflected poorly on the Indian media.

Shemin Joy, Principal Correspondent with Deccan Herald, said that taking pictures with dignitaries and ministers was fine, but the manner in which it was done spoke volumes about the journalists present there.

“It’s like they were crazy about taking selfies with Modi. The mob mentality of the journalists is the issue. They forget that it’s always their prestige that is at stake, for it reflects poorly on them. Even with Manmohan Singh, my answer would have been the same. In a way, Modi is showing a mirror to media and telling the journalists that ‘this (selfie) is what you deserve and you should be satisfied with it. No need to ask questions.’

“This is happening because of the lowering standards of Indian media. That elegance which used be there once seems to be missing now. It’s no surprise that ‘Presstitude’, an objectionable term, is now associated with the Indian media. Verily, we’re ourselves responsible for our plight.”

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Everything You Need To Know About The Skill India Program

Skill India aims to develop those sectors which require skills and skill development.

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Skill India Campaign is aimed at developing skills of Indian Youth. Twitter

By Ruchika Verma

  • Skill India by Prime Minister, Narendra Modi aims to develope skills in Indian youth
  • This campaign will help youth in developing their careers
  • Skill India campaign has many features which makes it distinct and successful

Narendra Modi’s government in its term has launched many programs which aim at improving the economical condition of India. The programs which are aimed at improving employment in India have been moderately successful.

'Skill India' is PM Narendra Modi's another dream project. Wikimedia Commmons
‘Skill India’ is PM Narendra Modi’s another dream project. Wikimedia Commmons

After successful initiatives like ‘Digital India’ and ‘Make in India‘, the BJP Government launched another program, called ‘Skill India.’ It is another dream project of the prime minister, Narendra Modi, which was launched on 16 July 2015. The project aims to train 40 crore Indians in different skills by 2022.

Here is the list of all the things you need to know about the Skill India Program :

Objective

Main aim of Skill India is to tap the vast potential of India’s indigenous manpower. The goal is to create opportunities and scope for the development of Indian youth.

Skill India aims to develop those sectors which require skills and skill development. The campaign also aims to identify new sectors for skill development. The main focus is to not only develop skills but also to inculcate entrepreneurship in the youth.

Also Read : Skill India Mission: How PM Modi can take forward UPAs work to make skilled India a reality

The aim of developing skills in 40 crores youngsters by 2022 is to be completed by running the campaign in each and every year of India.

There are also many other missions which Narendra Modi launched to fulfill this purpose. These missions are :

Prime minister Kaushal Vikas Yojna is one of the initiative launched under Skill India. Facebook
Prime minister Kaushal Vikas Yojna is one of the initiative launched under Skill India. Facebook
  • National Skill Development Mission
  • National Policy for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship
  • Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (Prime Minister Skill Development Scheme)
  • Rural India Skill
  • Skill Loan Scheme

Other features of the Skill India campaign are :

  • Skill India provides training and support for all traditional occupations like carpenters, masons, nurses, blacksmiths, tailors, etc.
  • Not only traditional occupation, it also lays emphasis new, modern areas of occupation like  like designing of jewelry and apparel,  banking and investment, finance, real estate, construction, textile, tourism, or any other field where skill development is needed.
  • For this program India has collaborated with countries like U.K. and Japan. This is done so that the training programs would be standerdised as per the international level. It will enable our  youth to meet domestic as well as international needs, if needed.
Skill India campaign has several advantages for youth as well as economy of India.
Skill India campaign has several advantages for youth as well as economy of India.
  • Courses offered under Skill India consider various factors such as age, location, language and financial status, to ensure that the candidate learns all the required skills like communication, management, etc.
  • The course methodology of Skill India is very interesting, interactive and  innovative. It includes games, group discussions, practical experiences, case studies etc.
  • Another important feature of Skill India campaign is the project called, Rural India Skill. It will standardize and certify the training process, as per the International standards.

Advantages of Skill India campaign and what makes it different.

The Sill India campaign has many advantages. It will raise the confidence and productivity of the youth through proper skill development. It will help them get well-reputed blue collar jobs. Soft training given during this course will not only help professionally, but also in personal development. It will also improve entrepreneurship in our country.

Apart from creating job opportunities, this campaign will also help in the growth of Indian industries by providing them with skilled man-power. While improving the lives of the youth,  this campaign will also help in improving India’s economy.

Also Read : Indian Consulate General in Chicago hosts “Make in India” seminar

Skill India aims to empower youth. Twitter
Skill India aims to empower youth. Twitter

What makes this campaign different from the other similar onesin the past is, the new approach. Skill India is not just a campaign, but a movement, as per the P.M. Narendra Modi. This program is also not for a certain strata of society, this program is non-discriminatory and is for every Indian who aspire to improve their skills and career.

Skill India campaign also doesn’t focus on just one type of professional skill, it is for all kinds of professions – be it traditional or modern. The certifying committee is also under a new ministry which will ensure that there no discrepancies.

Skill India campaign till now is running smoothly, benefiting many Indians and their careers. Hopefully, it will continue to run properly and will increase in its effectiveness.