The Confident Hindu

‘Chal’ Satyagrah- MSM’s yet another defining moment


After being treated to the blistered feet of the Khandwa agitators for more than a week by most of the TV Channels, we are now told by the Time of India that it was all stage managed for TV Cameras!. The news channels had been hyping up the issue with every passing day- ’13th day of protest’, ‘agitation enters 14th day, ‘agitation continues for the 15th day despite MP CM’s appeal’….The news caught not just the the national attention but the fancy of agitators elsewhere also- Harda and Kudankulam. Media dutifully hyped these also.

After 17 days of protest in ‘neck-deep’ water, the farmers won and the MP government agreed to reduce the water level in Omkareshwar Dam.

If you thought that that was “shubam- the end”, you were wrong.

How did this agitation catch the attention media first and the nation next? This is how it did-

  • 51 agitators
  • standing day and night.
  • submerged neck-deep in water.
  • no medical aid

TOI report dimisses each of these sensational points.

  • There were only 3 people who spent most of the time; others rested under NBA shamiana when the media was not there.
  • Water was just knee deep.
  • Agitators sat on stone slabs which had been kept in the water earlier.
  • Medical aid was in fact available.

How did the media- especially the TV Channels- not find out these for 17 full days? Either the journalists are dumb as mediacrooks.com has been pointing for the last couple of years and they played along. While Times of India says that the journalists were ‘taken for a ride, it is difficult to believe. Obviously one doesn’t need to be an investigative journalist to find out how deep is the water, whether the agitators are sitting or standing, etc. If, on the other hand they played along, why did they do so? What was their motive? Is it just that they wanted to embarrass the BJP government? Has media’s credibility once again not been dented by this?

Agreed that the trick played by the villagers will not negate the genuineness of their demand. But does stayagraha, the non violent tool introduced to India by Gandhiji not presuppose that means should be as genuine as the end?

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This entry was posted on September 15, 2012 by in Media Watch and tagged , , , .

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