Thoughtless Media Reporting and Desperate Political Movements – Tamasha with Terror Attack

Those fateful and unforgettable 60 hours of terror drama at Mumbai has not only opened the Pandora’s box of so called free India, including free media but also has exposed the real face of our politicians. “On the record“, I’m not blaming any one, rather I’m writing some real and indigestible truth of the media and the politicians. If media is responsible for the security concerns and aftermath bizarre of the Mumbai terror attack, then the political establishment of our country too has given them the chance and feedings.

In a structured and systematic way, let us see what media has done — to start with our very own Indian Media. It was painful to say that during the operation, at one point of time the cameraman and the reporter of NDTV have shown live the positions of the snippers sitting on the top of the Gateway of India, near Taj. Don’t they understand that by showing the positions of our sharp shooters/snippers they not only diluted our effort, but also allowed the terrorists to attack our key positions with accuracy? Forget about NDTV, one news reporter of Times Now channel even had shown a map and the position of the armed jawans on that map live during the Nariman House encounter? How will they justify? Is it free speech? or does it comes under right to information? The same channel too had reported live a rumor of the terror attack at CST. The reporter went to that extent of saying, that she is hearing the gunshots and blasts and there is a major blast at CST. The entire incident was hoax and was a rumor. It was reported as a rumor too in the same channel. But, by that time the damage had already been done.

Neither NDTV or Times Now is singled out here. These are just few examples of thoughtless reporting. Almost all news channels (both Indian as well as foreign) have done the same mistake. The foreign media including CNN too has done some blunder by giving the locations of the guests live as reported (report published in DNA). Channel like BBC does not want to call the Mumbai bombers as “terrorists”, rather want to call them as “militants”. I’m not joking. It is true. The same channel called the London bombers as “terrorists” some time back. Don’t you think it is a double standard? I’m not going to discuss about the Pakistan Media here. They are of course biased to their country. There is no point of discussing them here.

During the 60 hours of terror operations, the Hindi News channels were broadcasting like some cricket commentaries; “ab dekhiye… aur, hamare do jawan jakhami ho gaye“…was that a six or a bold out? Don’t they understand the gravity of the situation and public sentiments? How will they justify these commentaries? On a different note, one TV channel (India TV) went on discussing on the contents of the e-mail they received from terrorist organizations on the terror attack. They went on emphasizing the contents, the language of writing, and had explained the meaning (extrapolated to some extent too) of the content. What was that? Right to information?, free Speech? or glorification? That, they are the first TV channel to show the email?, increase the TRPs? How will they justify their action? Don’t they understand that by doing so, they not only glorify the terrorists, they also create panic among the aamjunta? and in turn are helping the terrorists? Hindi channel India TV went on airing the telephonic conversations of their journalists with the terrorists holed up inside the Taj. How did they verify that those are the real terrorists holed up inside Taj? If they were sure and had the information, they could have given those to the security agencies, not live broadcasting. The entire conversations are now in you-tube. Terrorists will use these videos as their victory against a country and their morale will rise. Do we want that? This is a serious question to be asked at this moment. This is not journalism. This kind of journalism makes the terrorists as celebrities. BBC defines this kind of reporting by using the term celebrity terrorism

Some of the Human Rights activists cum journalists have theorized the entire incident as a conspiracy of RSS and BJP with Israel. What kind of human rights they are talking about? Don’t they have the common IQ that any other form of terrorism except Al-qaida and Lashkar have not come of age as yet, so much so to hold a city to ransom for 60 hours? They know how to give colour to the incident in the name of human rights! Where were they when innocent people and the jawans were killed mercilessly? Kindly do not add politics to the death of our brave jawans. This is not human rights, this is anti-human and non-human. These are few examples of the thoughtless reporting of the responsible media. There are many such incidents. How is NDTV going to defend such kind of reporting? Can they come up with one more on the record statement? I doubt. Many people including some of their own journalist friends and the Navy chief has too have expressed their dissatisfaction on this. One has to remember, “one small mistake can whitewash 10000 good things”. The sensitivity of reporting and thoughtful journalism is the need of this hour, not TRP rise journalism.

Saying all these things, I still will not deny giving some credit to the electronic media like NDTV/Times Now and CNN-IBN. They have shown courage and have published certain things which infact united the entire population, and has created awareness among many. At least, the common human being became aware of the ramifications of these terror attacks for the entire world.

Coming to politicians… Union Home Minister Mr. Shivraj Patil, Maharastra CM Mr. Vilasrao Deshmukh and Deputy CM Mr. R. R. Patil … all three have resigned. Either they were forced to leave their posts or it is some political adjustment and face saving measure of the ruling party. Ruling party wants to keep the power intact as the election is around the corner. So, there will be some changes in their guard-ship, in a desperation. Their resignation is also a political movement and is clearly marked by Mr Singhvi’s press briefing. Every one wants to compare, “that our govt has done that, their govt did not do that”... Pathetic. Safety of the people, not Comparison is the need of the hour.

After the resignation of Mr. Deshmukh, CWC nominated Mr. Ashok Chavan as the new CM. See, how is a senior congress minister reacting? Is this the time for such kind reactions and revolt in the party? If he thinks so, then he does not deserve to be the CM. He has done that in the past (a few years back) and is repeating the same. I’m not doubting his capability. What worries me is the desperation and power-savyness among the politicians. During the terror attacks, ex-deputy CM Mr. Patil went on describing the incident as a small incident in a big city (and latter denied as a communication gap). On a different note, see how another ex-minister Mr. Gopinah Munde of BJP has acted? Without realizing the sensitiveness and the security concerns he visited the Nariman house area even before the end of the terror operation. How will he justify this action? I am sure he will have answers to this, as every politician has.

At the center, on that fateful day BJP’s PM waiting (this the word used by the media very often) Mr. Advani had shown some statesmanship by announcing that he is with the PM of India Dr. Manmohan Singh at the time of crisis. They went on announcing that both the PM and the BJP’s PM waiting will visit Mumbai jointly on a single flight to asses the situation after the sanitization. But, that did not happen. They visited separately and started on comparing the Mumbai terror attacks with the previous attacks. Who was interested to listen this? Where was the statesmanship? They visited separately, not because they were desperate for the Mumbaikars, but because they were tightly placed with their election rallies and wanted a face saving. Disgraceful.

On a different note, see how other national leaders and politicians of national parties are talking on Mumbai attack. Mr. Naqvi of BJP has commented with women with lipstick and powder, where as Mr. Achuthanandan commented on the refusal of meeting and reaction of Mr. K Unnikrishnan, father of slain Major Sandeep with some irresponsible and egoistic manner (I do not feel good to even repeat those statements here). Not only that, he went on justifying his statements further. What kind of attitude do they have? While all these things were happening, Mr. Deshmukh, CM of Maharastra had a dissasterous tourism trip to Taj with a film director and his actor son. Do they have public sentiments with them? I doubt. The politicians are not interested on the public sentiments, or the safety of the people, rather they are interested in their power, their own wellbeing and future of their sons and daughters. They can go to any extent to achieve this, can do corruption on the bullet proof jacket purchasing or fighting among them selves. Senior politicians like Mr. Lalu Prasad, Mr. Narendra Modi too have shown their desperation very much, through their usual political statements, pseudo-secular and inflammatory speeches . Mr. Modi went to the extent of visiting the terror hit places during the operation. Shame on all these so called leaders.

I have just cited a few of the reports here. There are many more such high dramas of desperation. Every one is busy for his/her own wellbeing; no one is interested for the martyrs, the innocent people and the aamjunta at large. Some one rightly said “an ace shooter shoots and gets a gold medal, govt gives 3 crore, another shooter dies while shooting terrorists, govt gives 5 lakh! Hats off to India!”

Aamjunta, better late than never. Wake up, before your house is ablazed and attacked.

Jai Hind.

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21 Responses

  1. An article reflecting the facts after terror attack. Hope the media and politicians will understand the anger of Aamjunta and take this in a right spirit and take the corrective action. The media and politicians should understand their responsibility towards nation and Aamjunta.
    Check this
    http://www.smallchange.in/

  2. I read your article on “media reporting” . I think it is one of the best researched article that I have come across in these days. You have taken the pains to add so many links as evidences in the perfect context. The article is objective unlike the many emotional outbursts that I have come out of people in blogs. Yet, it has an emotional content.

    Thanks for this article. It will help many students who are looking into articles on terror and an analysis following it.

    Keep posting.

  3. Rightly said. But, how will curb the media and the politicians? Media will not listen unless there are laws. They will shout “free speech” etc, etc… Politicians… they will never come clean. Not coming clean is their qualification. Tamasha will continue till we act or revolt.

  4. Great Blog Dada..

  5. To add some more to my last comment:

    One would have observed two things during the entire episode (common in general)

    1. Claiming to the first to report the incident (not once, million times), 2. Live and Exclusive.

    Are these really the most important side of a thoughtful reporting? Sickening reporting 😦

  6. Thanks to all for sharing your thoughts.

    Every one including you and me should stand up at this moment and do our bit for our country and for ourselves. The media and the political forces will definitely succumb to the public pressure, It was done in 1947, can be repeated again. We can show them what is right and what is wrong, but before that please do not forget about our own responsibility.

  7. I am not denying the fact that Media leaked the critical military operations. Since its the first of kind that ever happened in India (with such a high-tech technology and precision n planning), these reports just covering as it is like a blast scenario (remember the Jaipur blasts) and want to be the 1st to bring it to the viewers.

    Well what i want to say is: its not just the problem with the media but also with the legislation. We don’t have any “Emergency Protocol”, which has emerged now. Govt should tighten the strings for a safe-India.

  8. As fellow Indians we all stuck to these news channels all the day to know the updates. We felt safe for Mumbaiites when they showed the aggressive military operations. yaah, I agree they should have delayed or denied the live broadcast but all this happened due to lack of the awareness to these TV channels. Well for them showing the sensational news at 1st is what really matters. After all they are not social servants. Would they be daring to cover these incidents 24X7 if its for no-pay / gain. Frankly speaking I DOUBT IT.

    They might have thought about the common sense part but there are two things one is Moral and the other is Legal. All business minded organization follow the Legal and all the Social servicing organizations follow Moral (which by default and almost covers Legal).

  9. After all this tragedy, it’s outcome is much more disgraceful and agonising. This comment I recieved suits the reaction we need to give back to these politicians.

    I VOTE NOBODY

    Do you know that there is a system in our constitution, as per the 1969 act, in section “49-O” that a person can go to the polling booth, confirm his identity, get his finger marked and convey the presiding election officer that he doesn’t want to vote anyone!
    Yes such a feature is available, but obviously these seemingly notorious leaders have never disclosed it. This is called “49-O”.
    Why should you go and say “I VOTE NOBODY”… because, in a ward, if a candidate wins, say by 123 votes, and that particular ward has received “49-O” votes more than 123, then that polling will be cancelled and will have to be re-polled. Not only that, but the candidature of the contestants will be removed and they cannot contest the re-polling, since people had already expressed their decision on them.
    This would bring fear into parties and hence look for genuine candidates for their parties for election. This would change the way, of our whole political system… it is seemingly surprising why the election commission has not revealed such a feature to the public….
    Please spread this news to as many as you know… Seems to be a wonderful weapon against corrupt parties in India… show your power, expressing your desire not to vote for anybody, is even more powerful than voting… so don’t miss your chance.
    So either vote, or vote not to vote (vote 49-O) and pass this info on…

  10. Good article on the media coverage and the act of politicians. The political system in India needs a change.

  11. @Chaitanya: if people really understand this I VOTE NOBODY clause then, god known when the re-elections would stop. Because, we will be having re-elections each time we do not get a result. And you can guess who would be contesting; their relatives or family members, friends. And we tax payers would be baring the burden.

    To change the system, We need strict Candidate rules for politicians. These Rules will not be changed until and unless these Dirty politicians go out. It is same as: Tying a Bell in Cat’s Neck. God Bless India.

  12. Thanks Balu, Chaitanya and Rajani. Chaitanya rightly said about “49-0”. But, will that solve the purpose? I doubt!! Unless the common man participate in the election process properly and honest people join politics, nothing will happen. All these measures we are talking about are just cosmetic changes. We need some long-term solutions not short-terms.

    Through change and a re-look of the system is needed, not some patches here and there.

  13. Thought of sharing this with aamjunta. See how the central minister Mr. A. R. Antulay is talking (on the line of Pakistani propaganda)? Some are supporting and some are keeping mum. These people just want to divide and rule. Sick people.
    http://ibnlive.in.com/news/upa-proud-of-my-karkare-remark-antulay/80978-3.html
    http://ibnlive.in.com/news/i-am-proud-of-my-comments-a-r-antulay/81029-3.html

    Another interview by Javed Akhtar, which shows some maturity (at least). The politicians should learn some thing from this.
    http://ibnlive.in.com/news/govt-should-let-antulay-resign-javed-akhtar/80967-3.html

  14. Thought of sharing with you and the readers some thing on the regulations by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, India, exist today. One can file PILs or RTIs if they do not control their codes on their own.

    http://mib.nic.in/informationb/CODES/frames.htm

    Also, there exists “Self-Regulation Guidelines for the Broadcasting Sector”. It was drafted by the broadcasting sector in year 2008. One needs to remind them if required.

    http://mib.nic.in/informationb/CODES/ContentCode100308.pdf

  15. Some news for aamjunta 🙂
    Notice to Aaj Tak for 26/11 reporting; guidelines for media soon…

    http://news.webindia123.com/news/Articles/India/20081205/1121854.html

  16. […] Posts 26/11, Mumbai Terror Attack – Clinical MeasuresGhosts vs. Tantrik – a life-time ExperienceThoughtless Media Reporting and Desperate Political Movements – Tamasha with Terror AttackSlumdog Millionaire and its Colonial ConnectionsSunset to Sunset – a Day in IITQualitative Expansion […]

  17. This is a nice blog, the info are great.
    Good job..keep doing.

  18. It was through the media that the terrorists came to know exactly what they were up against and what all they needed to look out for. Irresponsibility beyond measure, indeed.

  19. Very useful information. Thank you for sharing it.

  20. This is very common in a big country like India where more than education, the caste and religion play the big role. Media is mostly thoughtless with the competition and paid news.

    Good one.

  21. This is very useful information shared here. I am really thankful for this.

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