Panaji, March 4 IANS | 5 months ago

Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar Tuesday expressed regret for his comments on journalists' educational pedigree and financial worth more than a week ago.


In a letter to Goa Union of Journalists (GUJ) president Kishor Naik Gaonkar, Parrikar said that when he made the comments, he was actually speaking about the need to disseminate information correctly and had said that "reports published in newspapers are of the reporter, who is usually a graduate and a common man, and has understood the issue".

"I did not mean to demean anybody nor was it my intention to cast aspersions on any person leave alone a mediaperson. However, I express my regret if the incident has hurt anyone's feelings," Parrikar said in his communication.

On Feb 23, at a public function Parrikar had said: "What is a reporter's salary...How much does a news reader earn? Maybe 25,000 (rupees). They are mostly graduates. They are not great thinkers...intellectuals. They write news how they understand it."

Parrikar also said that there was prevalence of paid news in the Goa, and "people take money to write".

His comment had created a flutter here, with a Congress leader complaining to the Press Council of India accusing the chief minister of badgering the media.

The GUJ had also objected and protested to the comments, with its members wearing a black ribbon during the first day of the state assembly's budget session.

"In light of the expression of regret by the chief minister, we will stop our protest now," Gaonkar said.

(Posted on 04-03-2014)