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Katju joins ‘presstitutes’ row, says most media persons fall in the category

Former Supreme Court judge Markandey Katju on Thursday joined the row over media persons being called ‘presstitutes’ and said a majority of them fall in the same category.

Stating he does not agree with remarks made by Minister of State for External Affairs and former Army Chief VK Singh, who originally used the word ‘presstitutes”, Katju wrote on his blog page, and Twitter and Facebook accounts: “I would not agree with Gen VK Singh if he meant that all media people are ‘presstitutes’. There are some very upright media persons I know, e.g. P Sainath. But, these are exceptions. The vast majority of media persons would certainly fall in the category mentioned by Gen Singh, as my experience in the Press Council taught me. What else do paid news, Radia tapes, etc denote?”

Singh, who is currently in Djibouti to oversee evacuation of Indians from Yemen, had on Tuesday compared the rescue operation from the war-torn country with his visit to the Pakistani mission recently, saying the evacuation was “less exciting”. However, he later made snide remarks against a TV channel for playing up his comparison remarks.

“Friends what do you expect from presstitutes,” he said in a tweet late Tuesday night, adding that last time the TV anchor thought there was ‘O’ in place of ‘E’.

The Congress had demanded immediate sacking of Singh for his remarks against newsmen.

The BJP, however, distanced itself from the controversial tweet of Singh, saying Twitter is personal and not a party forum and the meaning of the tweet can best be explained by the person concerned.

VK Singh’s remarks elicited sharp reactions also from a media body.

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