Media has its own professional and ideological biases in order to keep float their canoe. That as the canvas and Prashant Bhusan’s speech at Commits, Bangalore juxtaposed with this acrid report from media mogul NDTV gives you endless food for thought as to how much reality changes with media biases.
I commend NDTV’s Android app; it’s at least less fumbler vis-à-vis ToI one. POSCO comes screaming in to my screen on 10th February as I sit scrolling through the day’s headlines. The report’s pleading to take notice—to help fight the cause, to purge them of their ills. Alas! So much ado but on the other side of the peoples whose voices are nonchalantly painted in tones of red.
POSCO is out picnicking in India to ravish the country’s iron in Orissa off to Korea and process steel for the world capitalist markets. The iron is what convinces NDTV to presume Orissa’s Gobindpur as a “fertile strip” and not because indigenous peoples have inhabited and sustained on them based on agriculture. So much for the sake of media literacy, one is hard to wonder.
The hand-in-glove with the ‘distraught’ POSCO continues. Abhay Sahoo, CPI leader and torchbearer of the anti-POSCO movement, has been slapped with as many criminal cases as the Police can devise of. I have faith in our Judiciary and, though wavering at times, it will hopefully bring about justice in due course of time. Abhay Sahoo’s arrest made national headlines while the NHRC’s visit to Orissa to investigate serious human rights violations struggled for prime time space. Oh, wait! Do they come under the ‘human’ ambit at all? I can fathom an answer to link this with media’s scarce reportage of the NHRC team’s visit.
“The challenge we face is to persuade an underprivileged to accept and adopt a way of life that would be most fruitful for him, I wonder if great leaders achieved greatness as they were able to achieve this.” –opines Rohit Bhale of POSCO India.
The bedrock of media apathy has thus been unearthed. To assume the tribal peoples as “underprivileged” just so because they aren’t contaminated with drinks from the vending machine and clothes with brand names is taking ephemeral thinking to the hilt. Sadly, this thought has been impregnated in to the minds of the city dwellers so that when they read it in their morning papers, they curse and chide the ‘boorish’ villagers. The vicious tentacles of shrewd Capitalist brain washing have far reaching consequences.
Maybe this all is untrue, optimistically speaking. Recent court rulings (Ah, I love our Judiciary!♥) speak of a rough demolition drive of Orissa’s villages for POSCO’s steel in days to come. NDTV might just be keeping sacred the Latin adage of de mortuis nil nisi bonum and writing eulogies for POSCO. We can believe in this reality to take solace, or we can keep working against the present ‘reality’ of Capitalism to make the latter alternative an unshakable one. Media, the fourth pillar of Democracy can then cease its role of the fifth column.