Skip to content

National Press Club honours Indian journalist

In an interview with the club, Ayyub highlighted the suppression of journalists who attempt to speak the truth

Image - Twitter @RanaAyyub

Rana Ayyub, an Indian journalist, was named an honorary member of the National Press Club on World Press Freedom Day. In an interview conducted by the president of the Club, Eileen O'Reilly, Ayyub, who was named the John Aubuchon honoree of the Club in 2022, was informed of the protections and rights she was now entitled to as a member of the club.

Ayyub is the first Indian and second non-American to receive this honor. In the interview, she talks about the threats faced by women journalists in the face of disinformation and fake news used as a tool of warfare by governments.

A study by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) noted that 8.5 million tweets were directed toward the journalist to silence her for speaking up. Apart from this, she has faced several legal cases and death threats in an attempt to intimidate her.

In the context of democracies, Ayyub specifies, “Democracies cannot survive without a robust press.” She emphasized the importance of press freedom at a time when many Indian news organizations surrender to the current revenue model as they are owned by billionaires.

Highlighting the many instances of suppression of the free press by the Indian government including imprisonment and murder, Ayyub went on to say that the independent news organizations that speak up against the unfair treatment of minorities in the country are restricted from entering mainstream media by “slaves of the revenue model.”

O’Reilly acknowledged the risks, Ayyub had to undertake to speak the truth and assured her that she has the full support of the Club. Founded in 1908, the National Press Club is a leading professional organization for journalists. It consists of 3,000 members and is the leading voice of press freedom around the world.