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No decision yet on empowering officials to sue media houses for 'malicious' stories: Andhra Minister Venkatramaiah

ANI | Updated: Oct 18, 2019 03:53 IST

Amaravati (Andhra Pradesh) [India], Oct 18 (ANI): Andhra Pradesh Information and Public Relations Minister Perni Venkatramaiah on Thursday gave clarification over reports of the state government deciding to empower departments to act against media houses for publishing 'malicious' stories and said that it merely a suggestion at the moment and no final decision in this regard has been taken yet.
Speaking to ANI, Venkatramaiah said, "Certain media houses are carrying cooked up false stories against the government, without taking the version of concerned personnel. Even when the government officers are issuing rejoinders, such rejoinders are not being carried. While mentioning such cases, I proposed to the chief minister that the heads of the government departments be given free hand to take legal action against the management of such media houses. The Chief Minister said he will think over it. As of now, the cabinet has not taken any decision in this matter".
The minister also lambasted former chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu for terming such proposal as undemocratic and accused him of muzzling the voice of journalists during his rule.
"What is the sanctity of the words of Chandrababu Naidu. Why do you even consider his comments on freedom of expression? During his regime, the TDP government had issued many government orders authorising officials to file cases on individual journalists. Was that not suppression of freedom of expression? We are not targeting journalists", Venkatramaiah added. (ANI)