Parsi Press To Support Electoral VCC

In a move to respect and support the Voluntary Code of Conduct (VCC) related to the oncoming BPP Elections, which take place tomorrow, on Sunday, 1st July, 2018, Parsi publications – Parsi Times, Parsiana and Jame Jamshed will not be carrying any content – in the form of editorial or advertisements – related to the candidates vying for the seat of BPP Trusteeship.

The Voluntary Code of Conduct states that candidates would need to stop all campaigning activity forty-eight hours before the day of elections – i.e., 28th June, 2018. Four of the five candidates have signed the VCC (namely Anahita Desai, Xerxes Dastur, Ratan Patel, Eric Dhatigara). The BPP had issued a formal request to all the four Parsi publications – Parsi Times, Parsiana, Jame Jamshed and Mumbai Samachar – to support upholding of the VCC by not accepting any form of editorial or advertising content regarding the candidates. Whereas three of the four publications accepted the BPP’s request, Mumbai Samachar did not, and therefore, the BPP issued a second letter wherein they stated:

“We had requested the four Parsi Publications – Jame-Jamshed, Parsiana, Mumbai Samachar and Parsi Times to help and enforce the Voluntary Code of Conduct signed by four out of five candidates, wherein they had voluntarily agreed not to campaign in the last two days preceding the day of the Elections.

We have received written confirmation from the Jame Jamshed and Parsi Times agreeing not to carry any advertisements in the larger interest of our Community. Further, Parsiana has also confirmed through a letter to us stating that as their next issue is only due to be out on July 7th, 2018, therefore much of what was specified by the trust was not applicable.

However, Mumbai Samachar has not replied to us forcing us to conclude that they do not propose to accept our request. We do hope that as a responsible Community Press, you will continue to support this initiative despite obvious loss of revenue to your respected Publication and not allow candidates to breach the Voluntary Code of Conduct which they themselves have signed and accepted.”

Barring Mumbai Samachar, the collective press participation and unity shown by the majority of the Parsi Press publications heralds a new, positive era in a community that has otherwise been subject to witnessing publications not seeing eye to eye on numerous issues. While Parsi Times, Jame Jamshed and Parsiana have rendered a concerted front to this ethical call, Mumbai Samachar hasn’t yet confirmed, leaving a needling doubt that their Sunday edition might be in direct /indirect violation of the Voluntary Code of Conduct with regard to candidates campaigning post 28th June, 2018.

Leave a Reply