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Media should not show fake news: CM

Kolkata: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday urged the media to refrain from spreading the fake news as "that might cause social tension and even riots." Speaking at the relaunch of a vernacular Television channel on Friday evening, she said: "Media is like light. If it plays its proper role, it can direct people towards a positive goal but by circulating fake news, slander and character assassination it can easily misdirect the masses."
Banerjee said that the Indian democracy is unique and unity is the strength of India. "Unity in diversity is the beauty of India. There are diverse people, diverse cultures and diverse habits. Yet there is an underlying unity which forms our social fabric. Media should work to strengthen this unity amidst diversity," she said. The Chief Minister further added: "Media should ensure that distorted news is not circulated."
Banerjee maintained that by circulating news with vested interests, the media can do enormous harm to society as it often creates hatred among the members of different communities.
She urged the entertainment channels not to "show murder and conspiracy in serials. People have a tendency to believe whatever is shown on television and copy them." Recalling her own experience, she added: "At times, I am forced to switch off the television because too much bloodshed, crime and treason are shown in soaps and serials. But there are good serials as well along with family drama which is quite entertaining."
She said a mere disclaimer — such acts were not endorsed by the makers and are purely works of fiction — was simply not enough.
Referring to the musical harmony, showcasing Hindustani classical exponent Rashid Khan, percussionist Bickram Ghosh and sarod virtuoso Pt. Tejendra Narayan Majumdar, she added: "Just like this musical compilation which was so good to our ears, the harmony and balance in society is also a beautiful blend. If people from different castes, creed and religions live peacefully, then only can society become peaceful."
Actress Sharmila Tagore was conferred the Life-time Achievement Award at the event.

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