Manipur chief minister N Biren Singh on November 16 remembered his days as a working journalist and said that the media should always speak the truth.

Speaking at a National Press Day function in Imphal, CM Biren Singh said that he was extremely happy as a journalist when he got an award from the then state government.

“The insurgency problem was at its peak and army personnel always were present near the office… I know the problems faced by journalists…,” the chief minister said while remembering his days as a working journalist.

“Life of a journalist is hard as they face financial problems. I used to walk home leaving my vehicle on the road many times while returning home as I could not afford to buy fuel. Till today, journalists are working to serve people without any sound financial backing,” he added.

He mentioned that the pension for retired journalists was increased to Rs 8,000 from Rs 4,000. CM Singh added that the state government had launched ‘Go to Hills’ and ‘Go to Village’ programmes to help people get all government facilities without any problem.

People faced problems waiting to meet government officials. During such programmes people can meet government officials without much problems, the chief minister said.

He appealed to the journalists to be armed with concrete data and facts so that they can challenge any government report. CM Biren Singh stated that the state government will always uphold freedom of expression and would never curtail press freedom.

“However, one should also ensure that freedom of expression does not violate morality and decency,” he said.

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