MANGALDAI, April 8 - �Journalism or news media must be positive, it can never be negative. Journalism is for bringing in social reforms, eradicate the prevailing superstitions and show the society the way to modernisation with a scientific approach. This is what the people who are the pioneers and founders of journalism in India including Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, BR Ambedkar etc., showed us before independence, observed Dr Nani Gopal Mahanta, eminent political analyst, writer and professor of Gauhati University. He was delivering the memorial lecture on the celebration of the birth centenary of the first journalist of erstwhile Darrang district and a leading freedom fighter of the State, Late Paniram Das, organised by a local journalist body, �Mangaldai Media Circle� on the topic, �Positive journalism and its uplift� on Friday afternoon in the auditorium of Youth Club here.
Giving a detailed account of the different stages of journalism in India and Assam since the time of pre-independence till the present state of �Jio� revolution, Dr Mahanta defined Mahatma Gandhi as the best ever journalist of the modern India with his diversity and wisdom. He said, �Mahatma Gandhi used to write 500 words per day for 55 years at a stretch which could be evident from the recent publication of a book of 100 volumes on his journalistic works consisting of 55,000 pages that took around 38 years for compilation. �Regarding the journey of media communication in Assam, he said that Mahapurush Sankaradeva was the pioneer of this journey. In pursuit of preaching his ideology among the people, he used �Bhaona�, �Borgeet� , drama etc., as the powerful communication media.
Speaking on the present trend of journalism in India, he pointed out how the traditional print media has been influenced by the continuous growth of information technology and observed that in next ten / twenty years there will be no scope for news-based media and it will be replaced by discussions, articles, analysis etc. He even explained on the possibility of influencing TV journalism by digital media or the current �Jio� revolution in the days to come. Earlier Madhab Rajbongshi, former MP and a senior lawyer recalled the life and works of Late Paniram Das who had started his 19 years journalistic career in the Sadiniya Asomiya in 1938 as the first journalist of erstwhile Darrang district before actively joining the India freedom struggle movement. Rajbongshi highlighted on the different aspects of the contribution and sacrifices of Late Paniram Das towards the society including his foresightedness long before 60 years in preserving the rights of the �Jaati, Maati and Bheti� for its indigenous people. Jagadish Sarkar, EM, BTC while delivering his speech as one the invited guests promised to build an indoor stadium in the memory of Late Das in Kalaigaon where he used to reside with his family. Ashok Kr Barman, Deputy Commissioner, Darrang, Gurujyoti Das, MLA, Mangaldai and Sreejith Thiraviam, Superintendent of Police, Darrang also addressed the august gathering of more than 100 people including leading senior citizens, women activists, members of different public organisations and media persons among others. The function was compered by Mayukh Goswami, secretary of Mangaldai Media Circle earlier began with the lighting of the ceremonial lamp before the portrait of Late Paniram Das followed by welcome address offered by Hitesh Hazarika, president of the scribe body.
The function which ended with the vote of thanks from a mediaperson Ganesh Dutta also featured felicitation to one veteran journalist of the undivided Darrang district and a renowned academician Dr Keshab Ch Dutta with traditional gamosa, seleng sador and a letter of citation as a mark recognition to his untiring 33 years service towards print journalism.