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The Network of Women in Media, India, is an association which aims to provide a forum for women in media professions to share information and resources, exchange ideas, promote media awareness and ethics, and work for gender equality and justice within the media and society. Local groups linked to the NWMI are currently functioning in 16 centres across the country.


 

Media reports about sexual violence may be geared towards raising awareness and justice but the images themselves sometimes end up doing damage instead because they reinforce the stereotype of women as “easy prey”, in turn encouraging rape culture. One powerful way to make society view such women as “survivors” and not “victims” is to change the way the media depicts them. NWMi member Ankita Anand writes about her innovative campaign.
Nileena ACJ PrizeNWMI member Nileena M S won the ACJ Award for Investigative Journalism, 2018, for her story ‘Coalgate 2.0: The Adani Group reaps benefits worth thousands of crores of rupees as the coal scam continues under the Modi government’ published as a cover story in Caravan magazine in March 2018.
The NWMI expresses shock at the intimidatory and illegal behaviour towards a woman editor at the New Delhi bureau of Agencia EFE, a Spanish news agency, and demands immediate redressal.
On World Press Freedom Day, May 3, 2019, the NWMI shines a spotlight on the difficult conditions under which media persons gather and disseminate credible news and affirms its commitment to raise a voice for press freedom and for journalists everywhere who strive to uphold the highest tenets of journalism, without fear or favour.

Marouf GaziSrinagar-based independent journalist Marouf Gazi, 26, has been conferred the Third NWMI Fellowship (2019), instituted to support women journalists working in various kinds of challenging situations.

This year, the NWMI received 28 excellent applications from Assam, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jammu and Kashmir, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Tamil Nadu and Uttarakhand. The applicants belonged to various minorities, marginalized communities like Adivasis and Dalits, and also represented a range of media forms – print, online, television, radio and community media. Most of the applicants live and work in remote areas and in very challenging political and economic situations. All of them highlighted the difficulties of pursuing journalism as a career due to gender and other barriers.

The NWMI expresses concern over the order of the High Court of Meghalaya holding Patricia Mukhim and Shobha Chaudhuri of contempt of its court and imposing a fine of Rs 2 lakh to be paid within two weeks. This order, if carried out, could not only result in the intimidation of the individuals concerned but could also deter freedom of expression and threaten press freedom in the country as a whole.

Priyanka Dubey Chameli Devi Jain awardOn March 9, 2019, NWMI member Priyanka Dubey, bilingual correspondent with the BBC, Delhi, received the Chameli Devi Jain Award for an Outstanding Woman Journalist for the year 2018.

The jury comprising Bharat Bhushan, former editor, Sheela Bhatt, National Editor, (News) NewsX, and Vandita Mishra, National Opinion Editor, The Indian Express, said “Her news reports take up the burning and complex social and political issues of our times, helping uncover the reality underlying them showing them to be layered, complex, and variegated."

Network of Women in Media, India and Gender at Work jointly conducted a survey of media houses’ responses to the issue of sexual harassment. The survey was filled by 456 women (including cis women, transwomen and gender fluid individuals), working in print, electronic, online media, radio, on a full-time, part-time, contract, stringer or freelance basis. It also included journalism educators, trainers and researchers. It was filled in English, Hindi, Telugu and Tamil. HIghlights from the survey:
The Network of Women in Media, India, a forum for women media professionals from across the country, seeks to support promising women journalists working in challenging situations, remote areas or conflict zones, often without regular pay or proper equipment. Young women from Adivasi, Dalit and minority communities face immense hardships while trying to be journalists. Many new entrants to the profession do not have access to professional training or mentoring, and several such struggling journalists are even denied the bylines that could help build up their body of work. Yet, we know they represent a pool of immense talent and commitment to journalism that could bloom, given a little encouragement.
The NWMI concluded its 14th national meeting in New Delhi on 3 February 2019 with a renewed resolve to continue calling upon media organisations, especially decision makers within them, to recognise that gender equality is a fundamental right, and that ensuring inclusive and safe workplaces (within and outside offices), as well as gender aware and balanced coverage of events and issues, are Constitutional obligations that they are duty bound to seriously strive to fulfil.