Bill protecting journalists to be introduced in Maharashtra state assembly
The Maharashtra Cabinet on 6 April approved drafting of the Bill prohibiting attacks on journalists.
The state cabinet of Maharashtra on 6 April 2017 approved drafting of Bill on the Journalists Protection Act, a law prohibiting attacks on journalists.
The announcement was made by the state’s Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis himself who confirmed the state government’s plan of introducing the bill in the ongoing session of the state legislature.
The bill will be tabled in both the houses of the state legislature on 7 April 2017. The day would also be the last day of the state’s ongoing budget session.
• A government-prepared draft of the bill was circulated to the journalists and media houses for suggestions and objections at the end of 2016.
• A final draft was created after the submission of the suggestions and objections.
• The bill aims to make attacks on journalists a non-bailable offence.
• Along with paying a fine, the attacker would also have to pay for the victim’s medical expenses.
• In the case of an attack against a media house, the attacker would have to pay for the damage caused to the property of the media organisation.
While the bill does provide for the protection of the journalists, misuse of the law at the hands of media persons would also attract severe punishment.