The media in India seems to be taking an interesting turn; a not-so-pleasant turn. Especially when it comes to television news, but the print media is not too behind either.
The media seem to be reporting news, but never taking a stand; Almost like they are too scared to take a stand. Recently there have been many political/social developments where the media only reported it. Whatever further action was taken, if any, was through the talk-shows where citizens come to the fore and pour out their hearts.
This is convenient for the media, as what’s said then becomes a viewpoint of the guest… and the media get to claim the rewards if things fall in place, and raise a ‘we-never-said-that!’ flag if things fall out! An total win-win situation.
The media seem to have forgotten that they are the watchdog of the democracy, and the watchdog needs to have teeth to bite. But here, they seem to have even forgot to growl.
Take the instance of what happened when the goverment imposed a blanket ban on “blogs”. Or for that matter with the recently proposed changes to the Right to Information Act. Or the forthcoming law that seeks to curb the powers of free speech of the media when it comes to political stories!
Even though each of these real-life developments may be interpreted as serious issues that may impact the freedom of speech and expression of the people and also the press… the Press itself does not seem to mind.
Watch the journalists present the “stories” and you will see that they are taking a neutral stand in each case: Pointing out the issues and dangers at hand, but then softening the attack and stating in as many words – “we have to wait and see how this develops”.
A media that once was renowned to fight for the right cause and justice and people’s rights… seems to be focused only on the commercial success, and losing out on its courage to take on the establishment.
Sad. Indian journalism seems to have lost the courage, it once stood for. A fresh set of dentures will surely help the watchdog… the question is how and where do we get it?