Considering the situation of journalists and media personnel during the current COVID crisis an Intervention Application has been filed before the Supreme Court seeking priority of health care facilities as well as proper and adequate treatment for journalists and their families.
The application filed by Advocate Lubna Naaz on behalf of Dr. Kota Neelima, has submitted that based on the verified and unverified deaths since April 2020 there have been 346 deaths of journalists. There is a lack of medical aid and facilities as well as institutional support for the journalists who have been are working while unrecognized.
It further contends that there is a violation of Article 14 considering the fact that within a single organization there are certain journalists that are accredited while the others are non-accredited.
It submits that as per the guidelines of Journalist Welfare Scheme (JWS) launched by the Central Government the term media personnel does not include persons employed at a managerial level which thus excludes a large section of people from the relief.
It seeks a fixed amount of ex-gratia compensation that should be provided to the kin of the journalists that have succumbed to the current crisis.