Guwahati (Assam): Union Home Minister Amit Shah today inaugurated the first issue of “Asom Barta”, a Government of Assam newspaper, which will keep the people of the State abreast with government policies and their implementation. The launch coincided with the first-anniversary celebration of the state government led by Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma.
The newspaper will be printed in four languages, Assamese, English, Hindi and Bengali (in the coming months) and will be distributed widely using various traditional and social media platforms.
“India can only become great if Assam becomes great. BJP govt under CM Himanta Biswa Sarma has successfully controlled the smuggling of cattle across borders. We have removed AFSPA from over 60 per cent area in Assam”, Union Home Minister Amit Shah said during the inauguration event.
“When India will become a 5 trillion dollar economy, youth from Assam will benefit from it. The day is not far when all the capitals of the North East will be connected through railways. The day is not far when Assam will become flood-free”, added Amit Shah.
“The Government of Assam has decided to launch its own newsletter to directly engage with citizens and give people the opportunity to learn about the developmental journey of Assam,” Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said in his speech.
Citizens, intellectuals, and freelance journalists will have the opportunity to provide constructive suggestions to the Government of Assam through the newsletter.
The Government of Assam is committed to ensuring the widespread reach of Asom Barta.
In the first phase, the target is to reach one crore readers via various modern technologies such as Whatsapp, Telegram, E-mail, SMS and other social media platforms.
Over 10,000 hard copies of Asom Barta will be printed and delivered on a periodic basis to all State Government offices at the district and block level and to eminent citizens across the country.
Assam will be one of the first states in the country to launch its own newspaper and this is expected to set a new benchmark in direct communication between the government and its citizens.
While functioning under the aegis of the Directorate of Information and Public Relations (DIPR), Asom Barta has its own governance structure operating with an Editorial Advisory Board (Honorary) consisting of an Editor-in-Chief Bishnu Kamal Borah, Director, DIPR, and four members namely Wasbir Hussain, Anuradha Sarma Pujari, Gurmail Singh, and Bijay Sankar Bora.
Sikha Saikia, Senior Information Officer, DIPR, will be there as the member convenor.
The Editorial Board shall curate relevant stories and opinion articles. “The first edition will be an anniversary special. It will have 16 pages. Asom Barta will be printed in three languages, Assamese, English, and Hindi to start with,” DIPR Director and Editor-in-Chief of the publication
Borah said while adding that in due course it will be published in Bengali and other regional languages of Assam.
Asom Barta will report the implementation of government schemes and the effects of its policies at the grassroots while facilitating the people to stay connected to their legislators and government, he said.
“We appeal to the people to subscribe to this publication free of cost by sending a WhatsApp message ‘Assam’ at 8287912158 or by writing a mail to Asom Barta or filling up a form by visiting its website https://asombarta.com and sharing their mail id,” the DIPR director said.
He added that people can send their suggestions and grievances on the publication’s mail id or its interactive website for the government to take note of. (ANI)