While watching debates on newly launched Republic TV with my Friend from the UK, I was surprised how my friends reacted to the show. One of my friends, Andrew, just could not understand why the news anchor and the guests were all shouting on top of their voices? Another friend, Simon, questioned me and said where is the News? My third friend Lisa found it strange and said I was playing a prank on them by showing these fake TV debates. I was short of words and said to myself, this happens every day in India on almost all the channels.
The reality is that most of the TV anchors and other guests who debate tirelessly every day are not really news anchors. Rather than investigating a news, it looks like a competition for who can scream the loudest, who can continuously blabber without making much sense, and who can aggressively stop another person from making a point. Strangely, the debates are not won not on logic, but on shouting skills.
The fundamental aim to journalists is to inform and educate the people, examine and analyze the news, and share the news in an unbiased manner, even if it means criticizing the government policies. The instant bias steps in, then it’s all propaganda and not news.
How Indian Media Embarrassed People during Nepal Earthquakes?
Look at the Nepal Earthquake Coverage by the Indian Media. It was a shameful and vulgar piece of reporting which the Indian media carried out during Nepal Earthquakes. Just to get a media byte, the so-called journalists stooped down and continuously irritated people who lost everything in the earthquakes including their properties and families. The effort of the Indian government to send relief materials and NDRF team was a great move, but the Indian media spoiled all the good work of the Indian government by their “Yellow Journalism”.
Regrettably, most of the Indian TV anchors act as if they are really are powerful and can wreck the democracy by their biased, unreliable and unprofessional approach. Words are taken out of context; guests are not allowed to express their views; people who have come to debate are shouted down like prisoners, while anchors are hostile, disruptive and light-years away from true journalism.
The news channels make India look chaotic and insane to the outside world. The TV anchors do not look interested in the reality and mainly present tabloid junk as news reports. TV Anchors are happy to demolish reputations, sensationalize unconfirmed news and not even apologizing for presenting incorrect news. Like we saw in the case of a leading Indian channel, which aggressively boasted that Russia had called off military drills with Pakistan under Indian pressure. And next day, Pakistani media widely covered the arrival of Russian Troops in Pakistan, and making a mockery of Indian TV channels.
India is a massive country and there are many newsworthy stories that need media attention to make the people and government aware. It is important for Indian TV anchors to understand that freedom comes with responsibility and accountability. It is the right time that media organizations, journalists, reporters introspect their modus operandi; afterall these people need to play the role of a facilitator and not of a judge or propagandist.
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