Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, who is also holding the portfolio of Information and Public Relations, issued directive for a total restructuring of the Directorate of Information and Public Relations (DIPR) in sync with the changing trends of modern day mass media to make the DIPR more productive.
While chairing a review meeting of the Information and Public Relations Department at his office conference room in Janata Bhawan here on Tuesday evening, Chief Minister Sonowal also issued a series of directives for preparing a comprehensive roadmap to ensure swift and seamless dissemination of government messages to every nook and corner of the State.
Keeping in view of the recent trend of media use throughout the world, Chief Minister Sonowal directed the I&PR Department to create an additional directorate to specifically deal with the electronic and social media.
“Along with the print media, electronic and social media today enjoy significant command over the information dissemination system, the existing directorate would deal with the print media, whereas the new directorate would look after the electronic and social media,” he observed.
The CM also laid stress on speedy redressal of the grievances of the media persons and media houses and asked the department to take steps for early finalisation of the new State Advertisement Policy.
Underscoring the role of media in building cohesiveness and harmony in a society, the Chief Minister also directed the department to institute awards to encourage young media persons who play a significant role in generating positive temperament in the society through their news reports in both print and electronic media.
The Chief Minister directed the I&PR Department to prepare modalities for presenting six such awards every year, out of which three awards for photo and video journalists, who are selected through a neutral and independent selection committee.
Further, the Chief Minister asked the department to take steps for setting up a state-of-the-art Media Convention Centre in Guwahati providing avenues for intellectual discourse and media congregation. Sonowal also directed the I&PR Department to organize a two-day All India Media Meet with participation of reputed journalists of national and regional media of the country.
“The DIPR needs a new revolution. It must evolve itself to suit the demands of the changing times and redesign its structure and activities in such a manner that it is capable of connecting every household of the State,” Sonowal said with a direction to the Department to draft a new publicity framework to ensure best utilization of government resources.
The Chief Minister also emphasised on better convergence and coordination amongst government departments for publicity of their respective programmes and schemes, stated
The CM also suggested the department to expand its network of services focusing more on the rural areas. He asked the department to increase the coverage of its fixed loud speaker services in the villages, hills, chars and the tea garden areas, stated a government press communiqué.
Moreover, issues related to Press Accreditation Cards, exposure tour of media persons and strengthening the Directorate were also discussed in the meeting.
Additional Chief Secretary of I&PR Department Dr AK Singh and Director Rajiv Prakash Baruah apprised the Chief Minister about the activities and several schemes being implemented by the Department in the meeting.
Chief Minister’s Media Advisor Hrishikesh Goswami, Legal Advisor Santanu Bharali, Principal Secretary Sanjay Lohiya and several other senior officials of the department were present in the meeting.