Vijayawada: Andhra Pradesh government on Wednesday announced financial assistance of Rs 5 lakh each to the dependents of accredited journalists who died of COVID 19 in the state.

The assistance was granted under Chief Minister Relief Fund.

"In the circumstances reported by the Commissioner, Information & Public Relations and after careful examination of the matter, the government hereby accord sanction of financial assistance of Rs 5 lakh to the dependents of deceased accredited journalists under Chief Minister's Relief Fund," said V Usharani, Principal Secretary to Government, Andhra Pradesh.

On March 15, the Centre said it has approved financial assistance of Rs 5 lakh each to the kins of the deceased journalists.

In a written reply to an unstarred question in Rajya Sabha, Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar said that his ministry has carried out a special drive for financial assistance under the Journalist Welfare Scheme.

Javadekar said his ministry had issued an advisory on April 22, 2020 advising all media persons to take due health-related precaution and requesting media houses to take necessary care of their field staff as well as office staff.

The Minister asserted that the ministry of labor and employment through its advisory to all chief secretaries of states and union territories and all employers' association has advised all the employers of public and private establishments to extend their coordination by not terminating their employees, particularly casual or contractual workers from job or reducing their wages.

He noted that the ministry of Home while issuing consolidated guidelines for containment of the Covid-19 epidemic in the country from time to time, kept print and electronic media under exceptions from closing down directions issued for commercial and private establishments.

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