Tezpur, Oct 15 : Department of Mass Communication and Journalism (MCJ), Tezpur University organized a seminar on the Safety of Journalists in collaboration with the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) on October 13, 2022. The purpose of the seminar was to counter the growing threats against journalists and equip young professionals with safety mechanisms. Dr. Dhanapati Deka, Dean of Research & Development, of Tezpur University inaugurated the event and spoke on the importance of digital safety kits for journalists.
Speaker Colin Pereira who serves as CPJ’s chief strategist on journalist safety touched on the aspects like the physical, psychological, and digital safety of journalists globally. He discussed the importance of assessing the risks for journalists while reporting and the actions to be taken in such cases. He spoke about how to build a culture of safety in newsrooms, the importance of risk assessment, and how to build an editorial checklist for safety.
Speaker Kunal Mazumdar who serves as CPJ’s India Representative briefed the initiatives of the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) and shared the rights guide and legal aspects for journalists in India. He discussed various legal issues faced by journalists and the increasing legal action that has consequences for journalists’ safety. He laid stress on the unity among journalist associations both at the grassroots and global levels. Dr. Kapou Malakar, Assistant Professor of the Department of MCJ, Tezpur University in her welcome address, touched on the internet disruptions that intensify challenges for journalists and traced the importance of collaboration between industry and academia. She discussed the relevance of the incorporation of a pedagogy for the safety of journalists at the university level that could be proposed as deliverables of the session. Prof. Joya Chakraborty graced the event with a speech on the risk assessment of journalists globally and the need to manage, counter and negotiate those hurdles effectively.
A few local journalists from Sonitpur District participated in the session and shared their lived experiences in the field.