For the elitist Indian media, Ram Nath Kovind does not have the ‘class’

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I will be lying if I claim that everyone knew who Ram Nath Kovind was when BJP President Amit Shah, on Monday, announced his name as his party’s choice for the next President of India. Even though he was the governor of Bihar when the name was announced, not many knew about him.

However, the common citizens can be excused for this ignorance. A huge majority of them will fail to name governors of many Indian states, and that’s fine. But what explains the ignorance of journalists, who are supposed to have a better general knowledge owing to them dealing with current affairs on a daily basis?

What was worse, was that this lack of general knowledge was flaunted by many journalists – especially from the English language media – who instead of questioning their own level of political awareness, decided to mock the stature of Ram Nath Kovind – an educated man from humble origins who rose up within the ranks of BJP thanks to become the governor of a state and could now become the next President of India. Continue reading

Why the special law to protect journalists in Maharashtra is flawed

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According to media reports, Maharashtra has become the first state in India to enact a law that aims to protect journalists and media organisations from violence.

The bill “Maharashtra Mediapersons and Media Institutions (Prevention of Violence and Damage or Loss to Property) Act, 2017” was reportedly passed without any discussions on the last day of the budget session of the state assembly yesterday.

The news led to many on social media question the rationale behind such a move. While no one disagreed over the fact that violence needs to be stopped and punished, people wondered why give a special status to journalists? Are the provisions in the IPC (Indian Penal Code) not enough to stop violence? Continue reading

Hindustan Times shutting down editions – it’s dangerously lazy to blame demonetisation

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A couple of days back, some people on Twitter posted about speculations over Hindustan Times closing down several of its city editions. On the same day, reports claimed that Hindustan Times had decided to shut down its business bureau. Now it appears that both the speculations about the paper shutting down some of its city editions and its business bureau are correct, as the media company has not issued any denial so far.

As per a ‘leaked’ letter being circulated, the newspaper has decided to close down its Kolkata, Bhopal, Indore, and Ranchi editions. It’s not yet clear what happens to the journalists employed for these editions i.e. whether they would be absorbed into the main business or would be laid off. If chatter among the media community is to be believed, most probably they are going to lose their jobs. Continue reading

When “liberals” targeted my family for cracking jokes on Congress leaders

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Recently an interview of filmmaker Shirish Kunder, known for making comedy movies like Tees Maar Khan and Joker, was being shared by a few “liberals” on Twitter. Kunder, who was often target of their ridicule earlier, has suddenly become a role model for them because of his frequent anti-Modi and anti-BJP jokes and tweets.

One paragraph from his interview caught my attention. The same paragraph was shared by the so-called liberals too with much enthusiasm. In his interview, Kunder claims that no one was attacked online for cracking jokes against Congress leaders. Continue reading