Imphal: In an apparent reference to militants, Manipur Chief Minister O Ibobi Singh has said the media should be allowed to function freely and smoothly as it was important for people to keep themselves informed about the latest happenings in the state.

"Those who are disturbing media persons and houses and imposing terms that their press statements should be published in verbatim have no principles and rules of their own", Singh said while speaking on the occasion of the 39th foundation day of the 'Manipur Press Club' here on Monday.

Official sources said Singh's comment was in view of the followed frequent closures of media houses and non-publication of dailies in the state due to threats from militants.

The Chief Minister said no organisation or individual should cause fear among media persons who were working selflessly in the interest of the general public.

Some militants had exploded a bomb in the house of senior journalist and president of the All Manipur Working Journalists' Union A Mobi some weeks ago.

The chief minister said some persons allegedly involved in the incident have been arrested.

The sources said said the militants had exploded the bomb because Mobi, along with senior members of the Union, had refused to publish press statements of some militant factions.

The Chief Minister said the state government was looking into the problems faced by media persons in the state.

He said the government was also examining a proposal if pension for retired journalists could be increased besides improving the medical facilities.


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