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Over 100 journalists boycott post-Budget dinner by FM Sitharaman to oppose ban

New Delhi | In an embarrassment for the Finance Ministry, over 100 invited journalists boycotted the post-Budget dinner hosted by the ministry for the media.

Only seven to eight reporters – two from Indian Express, two from Financial Express, two from PTI, one from ANI and 16 editors attended the post-budget dinner while rest of the journalists boycotted the dinner, according to National Herald.

Also Read: Editors Guild writes to FM to lift ban in North Block; calls it ‘gag on media freedom’

The journalists did not attend the dinner hosted at Taj Mahal Hotel in New Delhi to show unity opposing the “gag on media freedom” that has been put by the Finance Ministry.

A senior journalist told National Herald that the boycott was an initiative towards safeguarding our interest as well as the interests of the coming generations of journalists.

According to reports, the number of hosts outnumbered the number of attendees.

A clarification issued by the office of the finance minister on Tuesday said a procedure has been put in place for “streamlining and facilitating” the entry of media persons inside the ministry of finance and “no ban is in place” on the entry of media persons in the ministry.

Since then, various top persons in media have opposed the move and appealed to lift the order.

While the government has been firm on staying the order, senior journalists and guilds are hopeful it will be reversed.

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