Friday, January 12, 2007

This is outrageous

The media is at it again. It always loves to make heroes or villains out of nothing. For the media, anybody who has been along with the Shiv Sena or BJP is communal and therefore a villain and menace to the society. Whereas those who are not affiliated to the two organisations or are Dalits/poor are the underdogs who need to be made look like heroes. Sample these two pieces of news from

1. Enraged over the alleged desecration of a statue of Shiv Sena leader Bal Thackeray's late wife Meenatai on Sunday morning, Shiv Sainiks went on the rampage in Mumbai and other cities and towns in Maharashtra throughout the day. (click here to read the article).

This was rediff's comment on the incident that took place when Meenatai's statue was defiled. Portray the Sena as villains who cause nothing else but nuisance and damage.

2. Atrocities on Dalits
As Indians, we often gloat about our glorious ancient wisdom. We harp on the modernity of our ancient forefathers.
And then, we skim through news snippets about some woman being paraded naked, or some people being killed -- because they are Dalits, the lowest strata of the caste hierarchy.

This is the introduction to the killings in Khairlanji and the protest. To emphasise the effect of the protest, rediff shows the image of Deccan Queen burning. Now, here the rioters are projected as if they were freedom fighters. These rioters caused more loss than the Sena did during their 'protest'. Yet, none were booked, no venomous protests from the so-called secularists or socialists.

The media has always been known to take sides with 'under-dogs'. However, why should they sacrifice the neutrality of a situation? I personally do not like riots of any kind, but the portrayal of Hindu rioters has always been as if they are villains, while the so-called 'underdogs' such as the Dalits involved in burning the Deccan Queen are shown as a people who vented out their frustration against the oppressors of the upper-caste.

On a finishing note, the most foolish and senseless comment made by an "intellectual" Dalit poet, Mr. Arjun Dangle-

"For many decades the Deccan Queen was the symbol of Pune, seat of the Peshwa Brahminical rule. There is a meaning behind the burning of train."

Now, the Peshwas are out of the rulers' seat for the past two centuries. So, they are trying to say that we burned the Deccan Queen (which is a property of the tax payers) to as a protest against the upper-caste Brahmins. Now, that should win the best logic of the year 2006 award. The rioters burned national property, causing damages running into several lakhs of fixed capital and operational revenue.

The media should rise to the occasion and take a stand against such damages, whoever causes it. And please, stop publishing such useless and senseless comments. They are good enough to instigate those who have not received much education, but do not stand ground in an educated society.

Mr. Narayan Murthy aptly said-- "India is perhaps the only country in the world, where people fight to be called backward."
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