The Manipur government has imposed regulation on uses of ‘PRESS’ inscripted vests, jackets and stickers and cautioned legal consequences if anyone found violating the regulation.
A recent order issued by the home department stated that the state government reportedly acknowledges the misuse of jackets, vest and stickers with wording/inscription “PRESS” in the name of covering various incidents related to the ongoing law and order crisis in the state.
It said such has created situation of apprehension of high chance of misuse of such jackets, vest and stickers by anti-social miscreants and unauthorised persons to get easy access to such fringes or vulnerable areas and resorting to provocative acts or otherwise unethical or unprofessional way of reporting incidents by unaccredited or unauthorised self-style persons or reports, which may prove to be counter-productive and adversarial, if left unwarranted without any check and balance.
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The situation also warrants the state government to take up immediate preventive and precautionary measures/action to install a proper check and balance mechanism at the checkpoints in and around the places/sites of violence to avoid any confusion amongst the general public and security agencies and also to avoid unethical/ unprofessional way of reporting by non-accredited or unauthorised/self-styled reporters, by way of entry regulation in such areas/sites of violence, it maintained.
“To avoid any kind of unwanted incident in the near future, the governor is pleased to order that Jackets/Vests/Stickers with wording/inscription “PRESS” will be allowed to be used by only those media persons, journalists, video-journalists possessing identity card/accreditation certificate issued by the DIPR, PIB, AIR, DD News and recognised national and international media firms with immediate effect and until further orders,” the order mentioned.
Only persons allowed to use such jackets/vests/stickers with wording/inscription “PRESS” shall be permitted to enter the violence affected zone/area for media reporting, it said, cautioning that if anybody found violating the aforesaid instructions/directions will be penalised/prosecuted under relevant laws of the land in force for the time being without any exception.
The order also directed all district magistrates, state police and security agencies deployed for enforcing law and public order to take up appropriate necessary action for effective implementation of this order.