Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal handed over Media Fellowship Award letters to 20 journalists of the state at a programme held in Guwahati on May 23.

This is first such scheme for journalists launched in Assam under the aegis of the Information and Public Relations Department.

In the same programme, Sonowal also ceremoniously flagged-off a conducted press tour of the rural media persons on goodwill mission to Rajasthan. Twenty journalists from rural Assam were selected for the conducted press tour from May 23-June 3.

Speaking on the occasion, chief minister Sonowal said that in the last couple of years Assam has occupied global importance. Assam’s strategic presence and the Centre’s endeavour of keeping Assam and other Northeast states at the heart of India’s Act East Policy and the first ever global investors’ summit held at Guwahati, has enhanced the global recognition of the state. He also hailed the efforts of the journalists of Assam who contributed to Assam’s taking the limelight of an important global player. He also said that the fact that Guwahati is the Gateway to South East Asian Nations, people’s perception towards Assam has undergone a sea change and the media has contributed immensely towards that.

Sonowal said that the media fellowship will be given to more journalists in near future. Acknowledging the role of the journalists in highlighting the issues and representing the aims and aspirations of the people of the state, Sonowal said that journalists are the conscience of the society and are working to strengthen the age-old bonding. He also said that to create value based society and good people, all four pillars of the society namely executive, legislature, judiciary and press have to work in unison.

Sonowal said that the goodwill visit of the rural journalists for the three consecutive years to Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan augured well in realising Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Ek Bharat Shrestha Bharat. He said that the conducted tour of the media persons to Rajasthan would help in building healthy relations between the two states.

Speaking on the occasion, media advisor to the chief minister Hrishikesh Goswami said that the journalists in their bid to social reformation have to emerge like anti-virus. He said that the perspectives of journalists are different from that of the common people and therefore, they can play the role of a catalyst in giving positive momentum to the society.

He said that the present state government, under the leadership of chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal, has taken several innovative schemes for the welfare of the journalists and asserted that in the coming days based on the suggestions of the journalists, the government would launch several other schemes.

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