Fact Check

Journalists Banned from Entering Finance Ministry? Not Really

Ban journalist finance ministry north block

Recently a story of journalists ‘not being allowed’ inside the Ministry of Finance has been run by many media houses. On social media, some journalists like the one tweeted about how the press is ‘banned’ from the Ministry of Finance.

But, is this correct? Has the government really banned the press or journalists from entering the Ministry of Finance?

What are the facts?

Journalists in a meeting with the Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had reportedly requested her to allot them a separate waiting room for the sake of their convenience while visiting the Ministry.

So, the Ministry of Finance reportedly made arrangements like an air-conditioned waiting room for media persons.

Further, the ministry decided to streamline processes. A more effective and standard system of having a prior appointment to meet officials has been brought in. Importantly, this is not only for journalists from private media houses but also for journalists holding Press Information Bureau (PIB) accredited card.

But after these steps were taken by the ministry, a story with a misleading narrative ‘ban on media’ was spread. This is not a ‘ban’ at all but just a process-oriented mechanism.

Thus, the clarification on this was issued from the official Twitter handle of the office of Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. The clarification has been produced below.

 

Thus, there is no ban on media.

It is also to be noted that there have been cases of ‘leaks’ in the past. The entry of media persons with prior appointments (a standard exercise) may help the ministry in screening out such leaks that could be potentially harming to the nation.

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