India looks upon digital world not only as challenge but also as opportunity: Smriti Irani
Our Correspondent / New Delhi
Information and Broadcasting Minister Smriti Irani today said India is a vibrant media industry which looks upon the digital world not only as a challenge but also as an opportunity. Addressing the inaugural ceremony of 15th Asia Media Summit here the Minister said that India was poised to have over 969 million internet users in 2021. Ms Irani stressed that this is the time to put rules which ensure that not one player dominates the industry.
She said that the statistics warrant the importance of having proper rules, ethics and laws in place to ensure there is no monopoly of one dominant player in the industry.
The minister also said, that in order to promote community radio stations, government has increased subsidy for setting up the station from 50 percent to 90 percent. She hoped that the summit concludes on a new pathway to strengthen media institutions.
Speaking on the occasion Union Minister of Electronics & IT and Law & Justice, Ravi Shankar Prasad said that for the Indian Government, freedom of media is integral to polity, duly recognized by the Constitution and reinforced by Judiciary in series of judgements.
He said that the media has full right to inform, circulate, criticize, advice and counsel. The rights of Media under the Constitution are also subject to reasonable restrictions.
On misuse of data, the Minister said India will not allow the country to become a centre of data pilferage, and that data commerce through collusive methods cannot be used to influence its electoral process. Shri Prasad said all the online companies which are in the business of data commerce must understand the nuances of accountability. He said that when the recent controversy surrounding data privacy surfaced, the Government took a very firm stand on these issues. Shri Prasad further said that accountability is integral to democracy and all institutions – the Government, the Judiciary, the Legislature and the Media – have to adhere to this principle. Referring to India becoming a very big centre of data analysis, he said that there is a need to have a proper coordination on data availability, data utility, data innovation, data anonymity and data privacy. He said that a committee headed by a retired Supreme Court Judge is looking into these issues and soon the Government would enact a data protection law.
The annual summit of the Asia-Pacific Institute for Broadcasting Development, Kuala Lumpur, is being hosted by New Delhi for the first time. Representatives from nearly 40 countries will discuss issues related to the media sector. Theme of the summit is “Telling Our Stories – Asia and More”.
Bangladesh delegate Hasanul Haq Inu said that South Asian region needs to fight cyber crime. He stressed the importance to formulate a digital security act.
Minister of Information from Cambodia, Dr. K. Kanharith said that India is a big market market of traditional journalism. He highlighted the ways in which new media and the traditional media can work together.
Dr. Vishnu, the delegate from Nepal said that this media summit will give us more opportunity to work together in the coming days.
Director General, International Department and Advisor to President, IRIB, Iran Dr. Abbas Naseri Taheri had a word of advise for users of social media.
Director general of Indian Institute of Mass Communication KG Suresh said that we should create awareness about the impact of fake news among the audience.
The two-day summit will discuss an array of issues including media business models in new era and emerging technologies in broadcasting.
The theme of the Summit is ‘Telling our Stories – Asia and More’, represenatives from 40 countries are participating in the Summit.
The AMS 2018, an annual summit of the Asia-Pacific Institute for Broadcasting Development (AIBD) Kuala Lumpur, is a prestigious summit in the Asia Pacific Region and India is hosting the event for the first time.
The Summit, with the theme `Telling Our Stories – Asia and More’ is having participants representing organizations like Ministries responsible for Information and Broadcasting in the Asian region, International Organizations UNESCO, FAO, UN; Regulators; Radio and Television broadcasting companies both national/ public and private broadcasters; Television channels and networks, Institutes/Academies of Communication, Media Research; Community Radio groups; Press and Media, and broadcast equipment manufacturers.
The Summit is aimed at encouraging regional and bilateral dialogue and cooperation to respond to challenges to the broadcasting sector in the region. It would provide a unique opportunity for broadcasters in the Asian region to share their thoughts on software and hardware aspects of Broadcasting.
In the concluding session, World Television Awards 2018 would be presented by Minister of State for Information & Broadcasting, Youth Affairs & Sports, Col. Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore. The Closing Ceremony would witness the handing over of the baton for hosting the next Asia Media Summit to Philippines.
Story is edited by Andalib Akhter