Need to celebrate contribution of local heroes in COVID-19 fight, PM tells RJs

During the interaction with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the RJs pledged to be the nation’s voice in the battle against the Coronavirus epidemic

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Updated: Mar 30, 2020 4:42 PM

Prime Minister Narendra Modi interacted with Radio Jockeys (RJs) via video conference on Friday.

The Prime Minister appreciated the role played by the RJs in spreading awareness about COVID-19. He said it was praiseworthy that even in lockdown, RJs are discharging their responsibility and recording programmes from home.

Today I had an extensive interaction with Radio Jockeys from different parts of India. Radio has a major role to play in spreading awareness on ways to fight COVID-19. I shared some ideas on how the radio can do so and also heard their innovative ideas.

He said that through the reach of the programmes, RJs are like members of families of millions of Indian households. People not only hear but also follow them. RJs have a great responsibility not just to disseminate and disabuse superstitions but also motivate people.

Apart from spreading information about the views of experts and steps taken by the government, the PM also requested the RJs to provide feedback about the difficulties and challenges faced by the people so that the government could proactively resolve them.

He exhorted the RJs to disseminate positive stories and case studies, particularly of those patients that have fully recovered from coronavirus infection, and also inter-play such stories in different parts of the country, thus bringing the entire country together. He also asked them to showcase and constantly celebrate the contributions of the local heroes like police officers, doctors, nurses and ward boys at the national level.

Underlining the importance of empathy, the Prime Minster said that it was important to tell the stories of misbehaviour with doctors, healthcare workers and airline staff due to societal fears of them being infected by the virus, so that such challenges are overcome. He also underlined the importance of educating the public about the dedication of the police personnel who are working continuously to assist the public. He said that the public should cooperate with the police, adding that while the police should avoid usage of strong arm tactics, it is also necessary to enforce discipline. The 130 crore Indians should act as national volunteers in fighting the pandemic, the PM said.

The government has announced a number of measures to assist the poor and under-privileged in this difficult time. It is important that information about these announcements reaches the intended beneficiaries swiftly and in a timely fashion. Prime Minister said that as mass communicators, the RJs can play a proactive role in informing their listeners about the announcements, along with educating them about social distancing and the importance of self-quarantine.

In their response, the RJs called the Prime Minister a part of the RJ fraternity since he has been hosting the widely successful Mann ki Baat on radio since 2014. Pointing out the unprecedented response to Prime Minister’s call of ‘Janta Curfew’  and his innovative idea of thanking the front line warriors, the RJs praised the leadership fo the Prime Minister and said they would be happy to play the role of the voice of the nation in the battle against the pandemic.

The Prime Minister observed that the public broadcaster All India Radio has a particularly important role to play in stopping the flow of rumours. He also requested the RJs to also work towards checking the spread of rumours.

He urged the RJs to work towards ensuring a constructive and positive attitude in society and said that ‘an attitude of togetherness combined with positivity is the key to facing the challenge posed by COVID-19’.

Union Minister of Information & Broadcasting and Secretary, Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, also participated in the interaction.


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