New Delhi: The Vice President of India, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu today expressed his concern over the COVID-induced financial strain in the media industry and appealed to everyone to treat their employees with empathy and care and stand with them during these difficult times.
Paying tributes at a virtual commemorative meeting held to pay respects to late Shri M P Veerendra Kumar today, the Vice President praised him for protecting the rights and welfare of the employees of Mathrubhumi Printing and Publishing Limited despite ushering in technology in the publication of a range of magazines.
He appealed to everyone to draw inspiration from the likes of Shri Veerendra Kumar and adopt a more empathetic attitude towards the fellow citizens.
Observing that Shri Veerendra Kumar was a multifaceted personality, Shri Naidu said that he was a respected politician, a prolific writer, an environmentalist and an accomplished journalist.
Lauding several initiatives and campaigns piloted by Shri Veerendra Kumar as the member of various press bodies, the Vice President said that he pioneered the cause of the freedom of the press in the larger interest of the people.
“As Chairman and Managing Director of the Mathrubhumi Printing and Publishing Limited, he made invaluable contribution in the field of journalism”, Shri Naidu added.
One of the important aspects of Shri Veerendra Kumar’s life was the empowerment of people through dissemination of information, the Vice President said and highlighted the importance of providing correct and authentic information during these pandemic times. He appreciated the media for empowering people through information and perspectives on the pandemic despite risks involved in the task. However, he also cautioned the media to guard against unverified and unsubstantiated claims on treating COVID-19.
Stating that Shri Veerendra Kumar was an exemplary parliamentarian, Shri Naidu said his conduct was worthy of emulation by all legislators.
The Vice President said Shri Veerendra Kumar was a man of principles and was deeply committed to the cause of uplifting the marginalized sections. He had always placed public cause above everything else. The Vice President said that his work and ideals will inspire the generations to come.
To illustrate his commitment to ideals and values, the Vice President cited the example of Shri Veerendra Kumar resigning from the post of Minister of Forests in Kerala Government when he was pressured to withdraw his decision to ban the cutting of trees.
Remembering his keen participation in the trade union movements and passionate advocacy of the rights of the workforce, Shri Naidu said that Shri Kumar, as Union Minister of State for Labour (Independent charge), ushered in pioneering reforms in the management of Employees Provident Fund and Employees State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) to benefit the workers.
Recalling Shri Veerendra Kumar’s support for the rights of the indigenous people, Shri Naidu called for taking a balanced approach towards development and the conservation of nature. Development should not be at the cost of the environment, he emphasized.
Lauding Shri Veerendra Kumar’s literary achievements, the Vice President said that he was among the very few men in public life and legislatures to have been honoured with Kendra Sahitya Academy and Kerala Sahitya Academy honors as also the coveted Moortidevi Award (2016) instituted by the Bhartiya Jnanpith Trust for his contributions to the world of letters.
Shri. Arif Mohammed Khan, Governor of Kerala, Shri. P.S. Sreedharan Pillai, Governor of Mizoram, Shri. N. Ram, Director, The Hindu Publishing Group, Shri. P.V. Chandran, Chairman & Managing Editor-Mathrubhumi, several Members of Parliament, Sri M. V. Shreyams Kumar, son of late Sri M P Veerendra Kumar and MD, Mathrubhumi were among the dignitaries who participated in the virtual event.