A dangerous development is taking place in the Indian media scene with NDTV crying hoarse from the rooftops that media freedom is being endangered by the Modi government. The channel started crying wolf when the Central Bureau of Investigation raided the premises of its founders Prannoy n Radhika Roy.
The Roys do not have a word in defence of the mass of evidence that Sree Iyer and S Gurumurthy, two perfectly qualifed gentlemen, have put it in the public domain in support of their allegation of humongous fraud. The links to their incisive writings are on their names above on the issue, which are a must read for anyone interested in knowing the truth.
A media giant has a cell through which one can plug any event, film or celebrity by paying money upfront.
Instead of refuting the charges, NDTV has chosen to hide behind the fig leaf of media freedom. Psuedo secularists in the media and in the political establishment have predictably joined the chorus. If they have an iota of commitment to facts they will not come in defence of NDTV. Instead they would demand a more thorough inquiry into the allegations.
What the CBI has unearthed is only the tip of the proverbial iceberg. By the way, the allegations against the channel were made first by M J Akbar well before he joined the BJP and then a formal complaint was lodged with the CBI by a shareholder of the channel when Modi did not have the faintest clue that he was going to be the PM.
In fact, the NDTV episode should mark the beginning of a detailed exercise into the working of large media houses who are bending and breaking every rule in the book, blackmailing businessmen into coughing crores of rupees by way of extortion, getting huge land parcels from politicians in return for turning a blind eye into their rackets, forward-trading ad space by forcing corporates and real estate developers into signing so-called “private treaties.” A media giant has a cell through which one can plug any event, film or celebrity by paying money upfront.
The time has come to put these large media houses under the scanner by bringing them under the purview of the Right to Information law. After all don’t they enjoy huge government subsidies in one form or the other.
It is the media mafia which poses the biggest threat to Indian democracy and not Narendra Modi.
1. Text in Blue points to additional data on the topic.
2. The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of PGurus.