NDTV, CNN-IBN – News Channels Or New Threats?
Among 11 people arrested in Bangalore on August 30 for plotting terror attacks, 1 is a journalist. Does that surprise anyone? Among the targets is a columnist for a Kannada daily. Will the news channels talk about him? No! He’s not part of their “elite” circle of mafia wiseguys.
Extortion, blackmail, murder, national-security threat, ISI & Fai-funded, paid-news, the MSM has clearly degenerated to ‘India’s biggest Mafia’. On August 29, 2012 two verdicts were on expected lines; one from the Supreme Court confirming Ajmal Kasab’s death sentence and another from a Trial Court in Gujarat convicting 32 persons for the Naroda Patiya killings in the Gujarat 2002 riots. The media dust-storm is gone so we can see a lot more clearly. In the rush to again call Narendra Modi a murderer, of having instigated killings etc. or to applaud the judiciary for upholding the death sentence to Kasab the TV media quietly buried a few important pages from the SC judgement. Those were the ones that slammed the TV media for outrageous coverage of the 26/11 attacks and went as far as implying the media was a national-security threat. NDTVand CNN-IBN must take a large share of the blame for the steep decline in news reporting and quality of debates on TV but other channels cannot escape the share.
Those in defence of our silly media over 26/11 always have the same question. Why didn’t the govt or MHA warn them? Even some journalists asked this stupid question back then. The tweet on the left asks the same innocent question. I have blacked out the ID of the tweeter as this could have come from anyone who doesn’t follow media that closely. My answer has been pretty much the same. Media has codes on ethics, has codes and guidelines on reporting from conflict zones. Nobody has to tell them to behave. These codes have been improved and modified with every major conflict across the world. The unfortunate truth is that our MSM simply doesn’t give a damn about their own codes. In most cases of conflicts and court verdicts these channels have been merely building drama around them and quite often on communal lines. Not only on TV but reporters and anchors from these two channels further aggravate issues by mindless comments on Twitter. Let’s look at how they handled the Naroda Patiya verdict.
Here’s another tweet, this time from the Social Genius quoting Mallika Sarabhai. You will normally find a small disclaimer at the end of articles in print and online media: “The views expressed are the author’s personal”. Umm… you won’t find that on TV so when SG quotes Mallika on what was already said on TV, one can safely assume she is furthering her own argument. Mallika’s statement is as comfortable a LIE as you can get anywhere. As a long-time resident of Gujarat I know that people here usually go about their life peacefully and hardly bother about the govt. I say that in a nice sense. They neither credit nor blame the govt for their success or their problems. Most Gujjus make their own fortune, misfortune or destiny as people rightly should. Mallika, for political pursuits, just insults them because she wants to see Modi in jail. When SG endorses that view she once again demonstrates her phenomenal abundance of ignorance and idiocy. The only hatred and prejudice growing somewhere are in the heads of Mallika and the Sagarika Ghose and CNN-IBN as a whole. Spewing of mindless hatred gets passed off as debate. This is not a stray case, many such lies have been peddled over the years.
On September 12, 2011 when the SC sent back the Zakia Jaffri petition against Modi to the lower courts in Gujarat the Cacofonix was unhappy (See tweet). She demanded that the Lordships should have at least passed “moral observation” implying the SC should have put Modi on their lordly laps and spanked him. Well, the SC finally obliged and passed strictures that go far beyond mere “moral”. They commented about our shamelessly inconsiderate media being a security threat during 26/11 and more damningly stated: “The coverage of the Mumbai terror attack by the mainstream electronic media has done much harm to the argument that any regulatory mechanism for the media must only come from within”. That’s right! They have been largely behaving like an unruly criminal mob. Our corrupt media is simply incapable of self-regulation and does need an independent and autonomous regulator (I would not recommend a govt regulator though).
On August 29 after a Trial Court convicted Maya Kodnani, former minister of Gujarat govt, who does the media rush to? Of course, the AVFG (Automated Verbal Filth Generator)! This was the statement of Digvijay Singh: “We welcome the judgement of the Trial Court… No minister would act without the instruction of the CM… the minister acted at the behest of then CM Narendra Modi who is CM now also”. The media had orgasms over his stupid statement without realising Kodnani was not a minister during the riots. The concept of fact-checking is not a practice in a corrupt media. They are happy to peddle the lies fed to them, like mongrels happy with crumbs. Not one in the media has ever confronted the lies of Digvijay now or in the past. Given that AVFG had blamed RSS and even launched a book “26/11 a RSS conspiracy” the right question after SC’s judgement on Kasab would have been if he will apologise for his conspiracy theories. But that’s how media lies, misrepresents and deceives the public. You see, truth doesn’t pay as much as lies in the corrupt world of news media.
On August 29 again the same gang of usual suspects had a free run on TV. Thapar The Tool, on CNN-IBN, mischievously asked the question: “Dothe BJP & RSS have a hand in the Gujarat riots?” It is now a standard practice with the media to discuss 2002 and 1984 in conjunction. A rank outsider might even believe that 1984 happened because of 2002. Why are they bringing up 1984 now? Fact: For over two decades the entire corrupt media buried the 1984 genocide of Sikhs. It is only when social media started pestering them that 1984 started getting attention. H.S. Jhulka, a lawyer, has been fighting for justice for Sikhs since 1984. He pointed out to TheTool that historically govts have always been a part of riots but that in Gujarat the govt did not interfere with the process of justice while all the cases in the Sikh killings were buried by the Congress govts and offenders protected. Naturally, TheTool quickly jumped to another question to further his agenda. Just as they remember 1984 now, the media might someday remember the issue of Kashmiri Pandits maybe when ethnic cleansing happens in some other state in India. Assam is bordering on that.
Since the SC made its observations against the media on its 26/11 coverage many, like the innocent questioner in the first para of this post, have also asked why the comments are being taken to be directed against NDTV. Sure, SC has not directed their comments against any particular channel. But from what I know and what has been reported elsewhere NDTV was the only Indian channel which was broadcasting in Pakistan at that time. And then it is also not possible to deny the histrionics of Barkha Dutt during the whole tragedy. Chetanya Kunte’s blog which called Barkha’s reporting “Shoddy Journalism” naturally seems vindicated. His post clearly reflected accurately on the kind of journalism practiced by both Barkha Dutt and NDTV. But has NDTV learned anything? Nothing! And then they sue TAM for loss of ratings and viewership.
Here are two images from the website of NDTV. Reporting the Godhra verdict in March 2011 it reports 63 acquitted in the case. In the August 2012 Naroda Patiya verdict it reports 29 let off. Naturally, people are seeing through these double standards and blatant communalisation of reports. When Muslims were not found guilty they use the term “acquitted” and in the Naroda case it’s “let off”. Now what exactly does “let off” mean, that the judge set them free despite guilt being established? NDTV has been a serial offender of journalistic ethics and in a new media order citizens must be allowed to file petitions for such criminally biased and misleading reports. A channel that still retains a media celeb caught lobbying with PR agents in Radiagate is hardly an epitome of “independent and honest” as NDTV keeps shouting from the rooftops. Manipulated headlines, manipulated debates… the limits of indecent journalism have already been crossed long back.
From August 27, 2012 NDTV has been running a series called ‘Mid-term polls’. This touches upon politics, some forecasts and like the ‘GreatestIndian’ nonsense on CNN-IBN it also lists greatest actors, actresses and if India should be pro America or not etc. I wonder what’s coming in the remaining parts… Greatest blacksmiths, vampires, soothsayers, pickpockets, jugglers… On the August 29 episode Prannoy Roy was busy discussing Priyanka Vadra and if she should get into active politics. For effect they will refer to her as Priyanka Gandhi when it is politically convenient. Pathetic propaganda! Unfortunately, the panel also included a respected journalist like Swapan Dasgupta. I guess even he is happy being reduced to a comedian in the NDTV circus. I wonder why the sudden polls, greatest and all that? Coalgate? MotaMaal? Maybe! But the polls also brought out something absolutely stupid: A question on who are the nicest people in India. Please read that as which state has the nicest people in India. You might also expect which state has the most criminal people in due course.
The result of this stupid poll has Uttar Pradesh as having the nicest people in India. If you shoot yourself in the foot or head after viewing the pic, please don’t send the bill to me, send it to NDTV. Mind you, ordinary people in every state are really nice. But a state which has the tag of ‘Goonda Raj’ is the nicest? My point is Goonda Raj doesn’t mean just govt. The Goonda-giri has to be carried out by a lot of people on the ground or foot-soldiers. As a person who has visited many states, cities and far corners of India I can vouch for the fact this is an absolutely idiotic poll. Kerala is the second nicest? Nobody says one is nice or other is nicer but what does it say of a report in ThePioneer immediately after NDTV’s stupid poll? The report titled “Not a paradise for outsiders” (about Kerala) doesn’t make great reading. So where does NDTV do its mindless surveys?
This frivolous poll is clearly reflective of the divisive agenda of NDTV. Now, apart from the rankings look at the fine print at the right-bottom corner of the image. Readers themselves have given a thumbs-down to the poll (1655 to 694). This is a supposed national news channel indulging in petty gimmickry and is proof that news channels can’t stand their ground without resorting to selling gimmicks and Bollywood trivia. So what exactly is NDTV’s agenda here? Clearly divide the country and its people more and more through spurious and mindless polls. That’s doing the politician’s job, not a news channel. As good as a threat to the nation! And then these channels accuse politicians of polarising the people.
Behind the ‘excuse’ and facade of news our MSM could well be entrenched in activities that would do any mafia proud. Chetanya Kunte merely stopped at calling it “shoddy journalism”. Subsequent events and incidents and finally the SC’s observation clearly indicate the MSM is actually a serious national security threat. That’s worse than just being the mafia.