CITIZENS, MEDIA & the GOVT


Vijay K. Saluja

Day in day out, citizens of Delhi[ & India] are being forced to watch the acrobatic acts of a different kind, of the political performers of two main parties & one newbie-AAP, on various TV-News channels- which there are many now & who are always in the race to `Break News`! Of late,some of the channels were focussed on the so called `cultural` festival in the constituency of Mulayam Singh Yadav-the strong-man & the mentor of SP-the party in power in UP, whose son Akhilesh Yadav is the present chief minister of the state.What the Channels were showing about this cultural festival was the performances of some of the semi-clads artists/dancers from Bollywood .Interspersed with their performances were the gyrations of some well known actresses/actors, beyond their prime, but excelling on the stage & the artists of younger ages lapping up their steps of special kinds being performed by them, for the big politicians of the State who were present along with their families, friends, contacts etc etc, in large numbers in gaily decorated shamianas duly kept warm by multi-convectors[ special heating arrangements].The channels were/are also alongside, panning various shots of hapless refugees, perhaps, affected by Muzaffarnagar riots, living in biting cold in hardly adequate tents provided by the State. These news were being supplemented by the images of odd twenty numbers legislators from assorted political parties of the same State, at the airport leaving the country for `study tours` at huge state expense, for/in five to six countries!!! Then, in the evening fiery debates, amongst the learned members of the political parties, retired bureaucrats, some lady activists/advocates etc etc assembled[interestingly, most of the faces are the same, day in day out, in various discussions/debates!!??] by the channels-management. To discuss the propriety of all this extravaganza which consumed most of the prime time, of some of the prominent channels!!

When, for sometime in the day ,the political news have been `broken` couple of times, then the slots are filled with news about Asa Ram & his worthy son`s escapades, their faithful associates who stood by them & are standing by them in all circumstances, situations & postures———-.then we have Nirmal Darbar, Bollywood news/stories, tales about various serials etc etc, interspersed by commercial breaks of various kinds & varieties, telling the viewers, qualities of good cement, fair-creams, insurance policies, latest models of cars , the festival-discounts & what not! Exhorting the viewers not to go away & keep watching despite the pressures of all kinds including nature, they face during long sittings before TV, is the common refrain of almost all the anchors!?

Not a day, goes by, when the viewers are not inundated with the news/debates of the kinds mentioned earlier?!

I ask my self- is the media- such a potent weapon with such huge reach, playing the meaningful role?

What about news about the development in India esp development with ethics? What about `Development-Heroes` in the society/system who are doing excellent work? What about various speed-blocks which various projects in the country are facing & possible solutions to those by the eminent experts/professionals?

Though at times lip service is also given to those persons by some of the channels?

Why media-barons/management are mostly obsessed with news of non-issues-about actors, models, religious thugs, rapists ,corrupts etc etc. Don`t the readers think/want, there need to be balance. Why do they not cover MORE, heroic stories of persons of integrity who are doing public good at huge personal risk.

Giraffe Heroes India Program is one such program which was launched in India in 2012,to commend Giraffe Heroes[persons who stick their necks out on sustainable basis, for public good at huge personal risk] There are many such excellent programs running in India. Why the Media or corporate who have CSR, do actively, not associate with them is beyond my comprehension!? Covering their activities will, to my mind, increase their TRP of those channels, too!

Why all these indiscretions by various legislators[some time back there was a similar news about legislators from Karnataka] are not noted by our hon`ble President, Prime-Minister, Governors, Judges of the Supreme Court/High Court, CVC, who, to my mind, have the powers to suo moto initiate corrective actions? In case, as per the provision in the Constitution, these SENIORS can not do it , then,isn`t it time to make some amendments in the provisions of the Constitution?

I do not understand?

Can anyone educate me on that, pl?

( Mr. Vijay K. Saluja is a Director of Giraffe Heroes India Program & winner of national & international award for his contribution to the society for his honesty & writing skill, Senior Fellow, Institute of Social Sciences, New Delhi, Ex President, IIT Delhi Alumni Association Ex Chief Engineer[civil]-NDMC, )

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