Union Minister Seeks Insurance Shield For Scribes Covering COVID-19

Bhubaneswar: With many journalists in Mumbai testing positive for COVID-19, Union Minister Pratap Sarangi on Friday appealed to the Centre to introduce a health insurance scheme for media persons covering the pandemic.

In the past few weeks, several journalists in Chennai, Bhopal and other places have also tested positive, Sarangi said in a letter to Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar.

“This unfortunate development has adversely affected the spirit of our fearless journalists for whom this is the worst and most dangerous kind of occupational hazard,” wrote Sarangi, the Union Minister of State for MSMEs.

Sarangi said the infected journalists should be assured of quality treatment free of cost, besides job security and salary during their absence from duty, news agency PTI reported.

“The government should make provision for a health insurance scheme for journalists… in the line with the insurance for frontline health workers,” he added.

He also called on the Centre to issue specific guidelines for all journalists covering the pandemic, such as mandatory use of personal protective equipment (PPEs) and report from designated sanitized areas.

“… It is more important that they are able to discharge their duty freely and truthfully, counter disinformation and ensure that our people have access to crucial and timely information,” the minister said.

Get real time updates directly on you device, subscribe now.

Comments are closed.