Monday, May 10, 2010
Best defense is to Divert attention…
Addressing the press in Mumbai on April 25, 2009, Dr Manmohan Singh had promised that, if voted back to power, within 100 days he would roll out an action plan to revive the economy. I still fail to understand when did the 100 days begin and when were they likely to end? Under an economist PM, we have seen a spectre of zero or negative inflation while the prices of essential commodities went through the roof! Forget the common man; it even dumbfounded the students of economics.
Now, the Parliament session just concluded. Parliament for the past few sessions were in chaos on account of alarming price hike and its aftereffects. Many political parties held a number of demonstrations and strikes region-wise and nationwide. It did create reflection in parliament too though it didn’t produce any productive result.
But now, where is that issue gone? Government seemed to be relaxed that the issue got ignored or sidelined and of course the media did its role also nicely! Recently we witnessed hot debates, arguments on account of Telecom minister’s corruption scandal and Mumbai motormen strike. Couple of days before the issue was phone tapping. IPL controversy and BCCI role and the ministers’ involvement also did a major part to divert the attention. Of course don’t forget Mr Shashi Taroor’s controversy. Yea, entire country and the media celebrated these like a T20 game. Government and Media enjoy it and common man sits with their fingers crossed and with their stomach tightened. I am not saying the all these should not be discussed, but these discussions should not at the cost of forgetting or bypassing the real and prominent issues like price hike affecting the poor people of the country.
We can not ignore the role of media in the entire series of events. It is not an unknown truth that Indian media particularly the electronic media stands for the establishment and serves the promoters interest. We can also very easily understand what these media houses are up to. They have their own vested interest and operate like a money spinning shops. Whether it is right or only a wishful unrealistic thinking, people in the country expect some positive and pro-common attitude from the media, though history says it never happened. This country has a number of burning issues to be highlighted and addressed but unfortunately our media do not show the required interest. We never see any determined effort from the media highlighting the issues related to price hikes, drought which is the severest ever in the last decade affecting millions of poverty stricken farmers across the country. Of course, media is after the TRP rating, I understand. We are served with meaningless news-stories and unimportant issue in golden trays and we relish it, though we understand that it has nothing to do with our (the common man) interest.
To help the Government the media are busy to identify new sensational issues to divert the public attention from the core issues. We saw how media celebrated Ruchika, Nathari, Mattoo cases, and of course the terrorist attacks in Mumbai. We also know how the media took interest to report the nationwide protests against the price hike. It finds more importance to discuss issues which got no relevance to public interest like what Jinnah or Nehru did 60 years or any petty issues like that. I reiterate that, though it never happened in the case of visual media in the country, we wish the media be the torchbearer of revolutionary ideas and thoughts required for galvanizing public mood in bringing change in our society and country. But it gives more importance to the crap news of ‘’Rakhi Sawant ka Swayambar’’ than highlighting the issues of poverty, crime, unemployment, illiteracy, lack of food, deficiency of health facilities, corruption, price hike etc.
I believe that a rethinking on these issues should be done by all the people concerned. If we don’t see and respond against these anti poor policies of the Government with the help of the media and simply stand as a bystander, the History will blame you tomorrow. Don’t think that you are not affected and so why you should be worry. The issues creating difficulties for a section of people today, would definitely affect you too tomorrow; but remember when you scream then, nobody will be around to cry for you.