National Press Day: A Day To Honor Free And Responsible Press in India

National Press Day is observed every year on 16th November, to commemorate the establishment of the Press Council of India. The day highlights the presence of a free and responsible press in India.
National Press Day is observed every year on 16th November, to commemorate the establishment of the Press Council of India.
National Press Day is observed every year on 16th November, to commemorate the establishment of the Press Council of India. UNSPLASH

National Press Day is observed every year on 16th November, to commemorate the establishment of the Press Council of India. The day highlights the presence of a free and responsible press in India. This year marks the 56th anniversary of the Press Council of India’s foundation. The Press Council of India is  a statutory and quasi-judicial body. It is responsible for maintaining the ethics of journalism, examining the quality of reportage from the media, while also keeping a check on other journalistic activities. The council has a huge importance in India as it was inherently constructed to protect free press and to consistently ensure that the credibility of journalism is not compromised.

The day emphasizes how important it is to have a free and unbiased media. Press is said to be the mirror of a society, hence, the day symbolizes the role press plays in a society. Generally, referred to as the ‘voice of the powerless’ the free press acts as a common channel of communication.

A free and independent media allows the citizens to make informed decisions, hold leaders accountable and hear a diversity of opinions without any interference from the government or any other institution. 

In India, the media is considered as the ‘fourth’ pillar of democracy. The press is considered such an important organ of a democratic set up because without the free movement of the press, a democracy is meaningless. None can undermine the importance of the press in democracy. In countries where democracy functions smoothly, the freedom of the press is preserved. This in turn helps the people considerably to frame their own judgments about issues. It also makes the Government aware of the lapses or shortcomings of its aims and achievements. 

The Press Council of India celebrates the day by hosting a number of seminars and workshops to discuss the many difficulties the Indian press faces. In honor of National Press Day the Council works on increasing the public awareness around a variety of issues concerning media.

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