National Press Day 2023: National Press Day is an annual celebration observed on 16 November in India, commemorating the establishment of the Press Council of India in 1966. This day serves as a tribute to the vital role played by the press in upholding democracy and fostering an informed citizenry. In this article, we delve into the history, significance, and upcoming theme of National Press Day 2023.
Celebrated on 16 November each year, National Press Day was initiated in 1966 with the formation of the Press Council of India. Recognizing the symbiotic relationship between democracy and the press, this special day emphasizes the importance of a free, fair, and independent press in India.
In November 1954, the First Press Commission of India convened to address the need for a body to regulate journalism ethics. A decade later, in November 1966, the Press Council of India was established under Justice J.R. Mudholkar. This independent statutory body became operational on 16 November 1966, marking the inception of National Press Day.
The theme for National Press Day 2023 is yet to be announced by the Press Council of India. However, each year, a specific theme is released to underscore the significance of a free and independent press in India, emphasizing the adherence to journalistic ethics without external interference.
The Press Council of India, as a government statutory body, plays a crucial role in preserving the freedom of the press, promoting public interest, and maintaining high journalistic standards. National Press Day serves as a reminder that a responsible and unbiased press is essential for the functioning of a robust democracy. It ensures that the press does not misuse its power and remains an integral pillar of democratic governance.
To celebrate National Press Day, the Press Council of India organizes seminars and workshops addressing various issues faced by the Indian press. Topics range from the Right to Information (RTI) Act to the media's role during crises, the duty of the press in promoting citizens' Fundamental Duties, and measures for citizens in times of crisis.
These events not only tackle pressing issues but also aim to educate the public about the crucial role of a free and just media in a democratic nation. National Press Day provides an opportunity to reinforce the media's purpose and responsibility in society.
The current Chairman of the Press Council of India is Justice Chandramauli Kumar Prasad, serving a second term.
The Indian media grapples with challenges such as lack of transparency, influence from the affluent, political interference, threats to media workers, and direct influence from political parties. These challenges pose a significant threat to the democratic fabric of the country.
The Right to Information Act of 2005 grants every Indian citizen the right to request information from government bodies, with a mandated response time. This crucial legislation ensures transparency and empowers citizens by providing access to information within a specified timeframe. It holds particular importance in the context of civil service preparations.