The boycott imposed by Manipur-based media houses on government-related news to protest the state’s failure to clear advertisement bills entered its ninth day on Monday, reported The Indian Express.

A member of the Editor’s Guild Manipur said that the media bodies have not received any information from the state government on the matter even though nine days have passed since the protest started. He said that media bodies were left with no choice but to continue with the boycott.

The media outlets began the boycott on April 24. They said that it will continue till the arrears are cleared or an agreement is reached, reported the Hindustan Times.

The decision to impose the boycott was taken at a meeting in Imphal attended by newspaper publishers, editors, representatives of the Manipur Hill Journalists Union, the Editors’ Guild Manipur and the All Manipur Working Journalists’ Union .

The media bodies had urged the Manipur government and the state units of the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Congress on April 15 to clear all the pending advertisement bills by April 23.

“However, since there was no response from the government and the BJP, the meeting decided to go ahead with the boycott,” the media bodies had said in a joint statement on April 23.

It had added: “In the case of the Congress, the meeting resolved to give some time following assurance given by its president.” The media bodies have also reportedly lifted the boycott on the BJP state unit, according to The Indian Express.

Bills worth over crores of rupees are pending with the state government while payment for lakhs of rupees for advertisements related to the Manipur Assembly elections held in February-March have not been cleared by the BJP and the Congress.

All news related to the Manipur government, Cabinet ministers, ruling MLAs comes under the purview of the boycott. The media houses are also not publishing advertisements of the government and its administrative bodies.

News related to the coronavirus pandemic, crime stories and those from the offices of the governor and the speaker have been exempted from the boycott.