Me Thinks

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Indian Media

Ayaz Amir is a Pakistani columnist and I read his columns in The Dawn regularly. We all know how the leading dailies like Times Of India, Hindustan Times are getting totally crappy these days. It kind of hurts when the truth is reiterated by someone from across the border. This is what Amir has to say about our print media.

Entire regions of India — UP, Bihar, to name only two states — are
in the grip of serious lawlessness and there is not much that
anyone has been able to do about it. But sitting in Delhi or
reading the Indian press you won't get this impression. Only when
something out-of-the-ordinary happens, a high profile killing, for
instance — although in India's wild east even this is no longer
surprising — does it figure in the headlines, otherwise not.

There is a full-fledged insurgency in the northeast — Mizoram,
Nagaland, Manipur, etc — but you won't get to know much about it
if your sole source of information is the Indian press.

More serious than these two problems is something potentially more
dangerous. From the Nepal border in the north right down to Andhra
Pradesh in the south, a wide swathe of territory almost cutting
through this huge country is in the effective control not of any
government, central or state, but the Naxalite movement. This is a
mind-boggling circumstance, about 160 districts of the country —
the total number of districts in Pakistan being 105 — outside
governmental control. But again the Naxalite movement doesn't
figure much in Indian discourse.

True, India's stability or integrity is not under threat. India's
very size is the biggest shock absorber of all, its capacity to
absorb problems of this nature or magnitude commensurate with its
bulk. Still, to insist, or convey the impression, that nothing
troubles the Indian heartland is to close one's eyes to reality.
As already stated, the Indian media performs this pigeon act very
successfully.

16 Comments:

Blogger NaiKutti said...

Yes, its quite true that there is a schism between the reality and what the media portrays... between what is told and what is happening... always, read media articles with tonnes of salt...

and what Amir says is something new to me too (particularly the no. of districts with naxalites)

12:04 AM  
Blogger Deepa said...

yeah naikutti, isn't that sad? Infact in that article he had written about how the entire media concentrates just on Bollywood. Thats a shame!

8:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, really sad. Part of the dumbing down process of the Indian media led successfully by Bennett, Coleman & Co and so assiduously copied by everybody else. But, why blame Bennett, Coleman and Co when nobody else has had the guts to even want to stand out. At least, B,C & Co makes no bones of what it is doing, unlike a whole lot of others. This reality hits us only when a non-Indian points it out.

11:45 AM  
Blogger Ajay said...

all the so-called great papers like TOI and others r concerned is celebrating King Khan's b'day or wishing Big B a speedy recovery...it really sux..

9:01 PM  
Blogger Me said...

haven't heard abt any indian who reads pak news....:o

i think real info is never revealed ....i am not getting defensive...but i think the situation is same everywhere....since u have first hand exposure to incidents in india u r able to relate to it....but it is the same all over the world.......

11:53 PM  
Blogger sen said...

Times of india has become a complete page3 magazine.

A related post here
http://jackofall.blogspot.com/2005/10/life-below-line.html

11:27 AM  
Blogger Deepa said...

In a way, you are right anon. We wait for someone else to point out and guess what? Thats when it gets harder to accept.:-)
Ajay, join the gang!
Me, I am disapointed you dont read Paki paper.;-) So do we differ on this now?
Sen, I'll check that link. Thank you.:-)

9:26 PM  
Blogger Me said...

sss...i dont think we differ..i agree with the authors as well as ur views...but my point is.... it happens everywhere and cannot be pin pointed only to india....

12:17 AM  
Blogger Nilu said...

That article is factually inaccurate. Period.

And, if you want to look further - its badly written, too.

12:49 PM  
Blogger Deepa said...

Nilu, please elucidate. Especially the factual error part.

11:19 AM  
Blogger Rajesh said...

Rubbish from the Pak media. He has counted the number of districts in Mizoram, Meghalaya, Manipur, Sikkim UP Andhra and probably Nagaland and come up with this number. Its true though that Indian democracy is safe. India lacks investigative journalism to dig out grey facts. I enjoyed the Tehelka days.

2:29 PM  
Blogger Deepa said...

Rakesh, any link that would negate his claims is very welcome.

12:18 PM  
Blogger Rajesh said...

http://districts.nic.in lists all the districts in each state. All these districts have elected representatives and work under the government control. Naxalites like ULFA are present, I agree. They don't have a stronghold in any particular region. However I accept that they are far more organised than we would want them to be, and the government should do something about it. India, the present govt., believes in improving economic conditions and are confident that this would dismantle the terrorist groups and urge them to rejoin the mainstream life. They have chosen that strategy over suppression through power. Whether it works out, time will tell.

3:32 PM  
Blogger Oracle said...

This guy, Ayaz though skilfull with words is a cribber to the core. He cribs about everything in Pakistan and even his fellow columnists have accused him of being cynical. I guess every armchair columnist has an opinion, but in a complex country like ours such strains of extremism is inevitable!

12:00 PM  
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