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IIMC being made into a university, says Naidu

MUMBAI: Minister for Information & Broadcasting M Venkaiah Naidu said that the process of making Indian Institute of Mass Communication (IIMC) into a university was under way.

The university status would give IIMC a platform to start many innovative programmes aimed at providing a wider perspective and inter-disciplinary approach to media education, he added.

Venkaiah-Naidu1It would also provide the institute with requisite resources to meet the growing demand of manpower in the industry and academia, Naidu stated this here today at the 49th convocation of the IIMC, New Delhi.

Speaking on the occasion, he urged the graduating students to stay away from sensationalism. He said that presenting the facts as they existed without any colour and biases would enable them to become truthful communicators. He urged them to preserve the country’s age-old values and culture while reporting and to use information to fight social evils such as corruption, poverty and illiteracy. While referring to the corrupt practice of paid news, the minister urged them not to succumb to such unethical pressures.

Emphasising the increasing role of social and digital media in the communication domain, Naidu said that social media had changed our ways of communication. Millions of people across cultures and geographies were interacting in real time, turning the world virtually into a ‘global village’, he added.

He further said that digital media had brought in immense opportunities and challenges because information was shared in real time, which generated instant feedback and response. Social media provided an important platform for information dissemination for the active young netizens.

People per se were not taking things at face value anymore. They were questioning, analysing and responding on issues that they had been passive about in the past and were demanding transparency, accountability and redressal of their grievances from the highest echelons of government and industry.

Speaking about the changing profiles of media consumers, Naidu said that Indian languages had made a major impact on internet- and mobile-based technologies, marking a significant paradigm shift and receiving the attention of policy-makers while thinking about ‘Skill India’ in the media industry. Adding further, the minister said that media strategists and planners needed to keep in mind the importance of regional media while planning campaigns to reach out to a disparate set of audiences.

He also mentioned that the government’s ‘Digital India’ initiative had propelled the new media to grow by leaps and bounds in areas such as animation, VFX, gaming and digital advertising apart from social networking and internet.

IIMC has the distinction of being universally recognised as a centre of excellence in the field of journalism, media and mass communication teaching, training and research. IIMC in the last six years has opened four branches in various parts of the country including Aizawl (Mizoram), Jammu (J&K), Amravati (Maharashtra) and Kottayam (Kerala).

341 students were conferred PG diplomas at this convocation, which included students from six centres of IIMC.

The students were conferred diplomas in many courses which included 144 students in English journalism, 60 students in Hindi Journalism, 72 students in advertising & public relations, 44 students in radio & TV journalism, and eight students in Urdu journalism. To cater to online students, IIMC will start online courses and a training programme on community radio in addition to many other short-term courses.