Ban on TV reminiscent of emergency days, says M Karunanidhi

Leaders of various political parties, including DMK president M Karunanidhi and MDMK general secretary Vaiko, on Saturday slammed the BJP-led government at the Centre for asking NDTV India to go off air for a day for its coverage on Pathankot operations and sought Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s direct intervention to protect the media freedom.
DMK president M Karunanidhi
DMK president M Karunanidhi

Chennai

In a statement here, Karunanidhi said the ban on the TV channel was really reminiscent of the dark days of emergency. Stating that leaders of various parties and media organisations have condemned the ban as termed it as an affront on the freedom of the media, he said a newspaper has come out with an editorial stating that the ban was an ominous curb on media freedom. He said the I&B Ministry could have either approached the News Broadcasting Standards Authority, which was headed by a Supreme Court judge, or formed an independent panel to adjudicate the issue. 
He also said that a committee of officials was not the ideal body to make an independent assessment and recommend the ban. Karunanidhi said this was reminiscent of the ban imposed on his articles written in Party organ Murasoli during emergency. 
Vaiko, in a statement said it was not an attack on television media but an affront on the democracy as a whole, reminding the dark days of emergency. “The BJP government’s move to threaten the TV media by imposing a ban went against the freedom of expression as enshrined in the Constitution,” Vaiko said.

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