New Delhi. “It is believed that facts are sacred and interpretation can be different. As far as the history of the Indian freedom movement is concerned, facts have been presented as they suited to some people. This is why gaps are being filled today. Filling the gaps is not criticism, but is presenting the facts in totality,” said Prof. Santishree Dhulipudi Pandit, Vice Chancellor of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), while inaugurating a two-day national seminar jointly organised by Indian Institute of Mass Communication (IIMC) and Indian Council of Historical (ICHR) to commemorate ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’. ‘Indian Media and the Freedom Movement’ is the theme of the seminar. ICHR chairman Prof. Raghuvendra Tanwar, DG IIMC Prof. Sanjay Dwivedi and ADG IIMC Ashish Goyal were also present.
The JNU VC further said that despite different languages, the spirit of Indian media has been the same. The media claims to be the fourth estate, but today it has assumed the form of an industry. During the freedom movement journalism was a mission, but nowadays running a media house is a business. Calling upon the media students to learn different Indian languages, she said languages should be accepted as a medium of communication and not as an ideology. She stressed the need that media should follow self-restraint and crosscheck the facts before making them public. Sense of social responsibility is also an essential spirit for the media person.
ICHR chairman Prof. Raghuvendra Tanwar said they are not trying to change the narratives but are trying to fill the gaps left during all these years. He said history should tell the truth. But sadly, incorrect history was taught to the Indian students claiming that the Indian freedom movement began in the 20th century. Whereas fact is that the Indian freedom struggle is centuries old. The reports, documents, etc. which are used for history writing are edited at any stage. Hence, we commit the mistake of accepting the edited version as history.
Director General of IIMC Prof. Sanjay Dwivedi said the story of Indian freedom struggle has not been presented in totality. There are many names and movements, which find no mention. Journalists have a significant role to play in generating the sense of history and awakening in the masses. “It is time to return to the roots of thoughts and feel proud in Bharatbodh, Indianness, own land and our ancestors,” he added.
Earlier, convener of the Seminar Prof. Pramod Kumar introduced the theme and informed that more than 300 media researchers and faculty members have registered for the seminar and over 100 scholars are presenting research papers. Prof. Sangeeta Pranvendra, Course Director of English Journalism moderated the inaugural session, while ADG IIMC Ashish Goyal proposed the vote of thanks.
The two-day national seminar has an added attraction in the form of a marvellous exhibition that depicts the history of freedom movement in a highly enlightening manner. The exhibition has been prepared by the ICHR.
First technical session of the seminar was on the theme of ‘Folk Media and Freedom Movement’. Vice Chancellor of Maharshi Valmiki Sanskrit University, Kaithal, Haryana, Prof. Ramesh Bhardwaj and Associate Professor in IIMC Dr. Rakesh Upadhyaya shared their thoughts. The session was moderated by co-convener of the seminar Dr. Rachna Sharma. Associate Professor Dr. Rinku Pegu proposed a vote of thanks.
The topic of the second technical session was ‘Proscribed Press in Colonial India’. Eminent scholar Dr Narendra Shukla, who is Head of Research and Publications Division in Nehru Museum and Memorial Library, Assistant Professor in Bharati College of University of Delhi Dr. Anshu Yadav and Dean Academics in IIMC Prof. Govind Singh shared their thoughts on the topic. The session was moderate by Dr. Rakesh Upadhyaya, while vote of thanks was proposed by Dr. Pawan Koundal.
Third technical session was on the theme “Audio Visual Media and National Awakening during British Period”. Filmmaker and historian Dr. Raajiv Srivaastav, CEO of Advertising Standards Council of India Ms. Manish Kapoor and senior journalist as well as consultant in Prasar Bharati Shri Umesh Chaturvedi shared their thoughts. The session was moderated by Prof. Anubhuti Yadav, Course Director of AD&PR. Prof. VK Bharti proposed a vote of thanks.