Saturday, September 17, 2011

Don't Cry For Gujaratis, Barkha Dutt

Journalists who are soaked in ‘Arts’ education usually forget some important learning they may have acquired in school or college. They have forgotten Mark Antony V Brutus. The most important lesson being that the public has an opposite reaction to anything that is excessively hyped or should I say ‘trolled’. I recall when Hrithik Roshan first burst on the scene with a superhit with his debut film the media had declared him the next superstar, almost the new Bollywood god. He followed it up with a string of flops. Not too far behind was Vivek Oberoi who was similarly hyped up but came crashing down. But Brutus is an ‘honourable’ man and so too Barkha Dutt is an ‘honourable’ journalist. After all, wasn’t she awarded the Padma Shri? So what drives her obsession with Narendra Modi? She analyses him psychologically but can’t see her own visible feeling of ‘rejection’ that she couldn’t get him.  And that’s what she writes about in another troll-like article titled “Only half the truth” (September 16)  on the Hindustan Times website.

What is amazing is that on the same date as her article, another one appears on the website of her own channel, NDTV, “Narendra Modi on politics, poetry and Rahul Gandhi as PM” by CSS Latha. I wonder if Barkha has managed to read it. Doesn’t matter. As always let’s try and figure what the psychologist’s problem is. (Quotes from Barkha’s article in blue).

Here’s her opening salvo: Much as I would like to borrow from this season’s style and write an ‘open’ letter to Narendra Modi, the Gujarat chief minister would probably make it a point to throw my missive straight into the bin. So you see, when a mind is already working on assumptions and presumptions the road to prejudice is already paved in the recesses of her mind. A journalist has the freedom to write, whether people read it or not is their freedom. Unfortunately, Barkha Dutt is yet to completely understand the concept of freedom. Everytime she talks about absorbing criticism she should read the blogpost by Chaitanya Kunte on her ‘Shoddy journalism’ during the 26/11 terrorist strikes. Her stupid response to that was a legal notice to silence him. And frankly, Kunte hadn’t written anything that was remotely untrue.

While on that topic I wonder if  Barkha has read my open letter to her. She can choose to read and respond. If she chooses the dust bin that wouldn’t surprise me either.

As a journalist who reported the riots from the ground on the stretch between Godhra and Vadodara and pointed out— like many others — the complete absence of police intervention, I have earned the permanent ire of Modi and his legion of followers… Not exactly true! At the time the riots happened Barkha Dutt wasn’t the only journalist reporting from the ground. There were many others too. Barkha lives in denial if she doesn’t recognise that she has earned this “permanent ire” not just because of her reporting in 2002 but more because of the sustained peddling of untruths about Modi by her and her channel. If it still hasn’t occurred to her that she is predominantly perceived as a Modi-hater and Modi-basher then she’s the one out of touch with people and not Modi.  She has earned this “permanent ire”  by hosting dubious characters on her channel to spam Modi with hatred. The honest fact is that when the riots were being reported Barkha Dutt and her colleague Rajdeep Sardesai were actually held in high esteem by the public. It is she who should be wondering how she managed to erode all that trust and credibility that a journalist so values. While the public has helped Modi go from strength to strength, Barkha has simply become a caricature of herself. She has depreciated her standing so much so that her mere appearance on the TV screen is now revolting for many people. The TRP ratings and financial performance of NDTV should give her some sound lessons on who has lost credibility.

By now, in the public imagination, We, the English Media, had become the hostile outsiders and Modi’s narrative had managed to successfully equate all criticism of him with criticism of the Gujarati people. Subsequently, Narendra Modi has resolutely refused to speak to me and a few other journalists for nine years. I have to laugh at this one, hahahaha! Modi is not the only issue why the English media has become hostile outsiders. The slanted and biased reporting on every issue concerning the Congress is what has led English media to its fate. Here’s an honest question for Barkha. Has NDTV covered any major event of significance in Gujarat? Did she cover the last Vibrant Gujarat event? Fact is, every step of the way the English media, NDTV in particular, has provided a platform to Modi-haters than a more balanced approach. Recommend that Barkha read this and check for herself:  “15 Lakh Crores &The Business Channels Don’t Find It Newsworthy!”

But now Modi is confronted with a deeper philosophical question. Does he want to be the chief minister of Gujarat for the rest of his life or a pan-Indian leader with national acceptability and the ability to build consensus across party lines….. Hidden in this stupid question is an agenda that somehow seeks to bring in ‘philosophy’ rather than rational argument. If Barkha cared to read Latha’s article on her interaction with Modi on the NDTV website she would find the answers to all her questions. My advice to Barkha is – stop worrying about what Modi wants or what he will become and start worrying what you had aspired to and what you have become. Journalists are expected to follow morals and ethics more than politicians. This is where Barkha Dutt has failed and therefore everything she says seems hollow and merely a literary exercise.

Barkha Dutt cites the pleading of J.S. Bandukwala seeking some regret or expression of that by Modi. Following the Radiagate episode it was clear that Barkha Dutt had brought more shame on Indian journalism than any other single journalist. In subsequent programs instead of accepting she had erred or was actually corrupt she refused to even acknowledge any wrong doing. With her credibility so completely eroded over the years the wonder is not that this troll even appears on TV or writes in magazines/websites. The real wonder is how or why she has been allowed to even keep her job. No mature media outlet in any democracy would have condoned her conduct.

But reconciliation is often about new beginnings as well. The question is not whether Modi can shed his history. The question is: Does he even want to?  So she writes. Start with  yourself Barkha. Acknowledge you were biased not just on Gujarat or Modi but a whole lot of other issues. These include Kashmir, Kandahar and the list can be lengthened. But as in the case of any compromised journalist, in Barkha’s case truth seems to be that skirt that keeps getting shorter and shorter. The question therefore for Barkha is not whether Modi can shed his history, the question is whether she will express regret and shed her past. Stringing along a crooked source can be managed for a while, stringing along the public won’t succeed forever.

Here’s the reconciliation deal for you Barkha. NDTV has consistently lied about the number of people killed in the riots. Would you correct it and apologise? Your one-time colleague and prominent ingredient of Radiagate, Vir Sanghvi, called Modi a ‘mass murderer’. Is that meant to be objective criticism? Would you ask him to apologise? Your one-time colleague, Rajdeep Sardesai, used the same ‘mass murderer’ term to attempt to humiliate Modi in an HT event in 2007 where Modi was invited as a chief speaker. Would you ask him to apologise. Before you accuse anyone, let alone Modi, take a look at yourself. If people coined the term Barkhagate, they aren’t the vindictive pricks that you imagine they are.

Barkha accuses Modi of shunning criticism. Politicians are used to criticism, gheraos and even heckling as Rahul Gandhi would have recently discovered. There isn’t much they can hide from the public. There are many senior journalists today in Ahmedabad reporting on the two fasts. Where are you Barkha? Fact is there is hardly any public event that Barkha Dutt can go to without being heckled and booed. And that painful truth hurts her into crocodile tears for Gujarat. Barkha has called Gujaratis “traditionally effete people” ! Well, Barkha, don’t cry for Gujjus… We are doing fine.

Update (18/9/2011): Since this post was made many senior journalists have conducted interviews with Narendra Modi at the Sadbhavna venue in Ahmedabad. The ones whose conscience is tainted were the ones missing from the scene. After years of spewing hatred and spreading lies about Modi Barkha Dutt and Rajdeep Sardesai would be the ones facing the problems even talking to him. Instead, with no context at all, NDTV was busy airing a film about Sonia Gandhi during the initial hours of the Sadbhavna mission. Thereby hangs a tale.

29 comments:

  1. Her goes a joke:
    A fellow wanted to mate with a Japanese and achieves though he does not know Japanese language.
    At the end of all the four endeavors, she yelled "Toshiba" and the fellow was under the impression he was satisfied and shown his masculinity.

    Next day he played golf and the ball did not fall into the hole and a girl witnessing it yelled "Toshiba". Upon which the man called the girl and asked the meaning of "Toshiba" for which the girl replied "did not fall into the hole.
    The fellow was much disappointed since all his last night engagement went frittered and was only his self satisfaction. Burkah stands in the same scale of the fellow. Means fiasco in all her endeavours

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  2. Yes barkha, we gujaratis don't need your fake analysis, we chose our leader and we are happy with him. Please for gods sake now you better retire from journalism and do big favour to the country. Amit anam.

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  3. Barkha, sorry Burqua knows very well that she will be doomed and destroyed if Modi becomes PM, all her misdeeds and money trails will be probed and will be sent behind bars, that is why she spews venom on Modi at every possible opportunity. Who cares? The moment I see her ugly face in the channel, I turn off, I hardly watch NDTV & CNN- IBN. Both she and Rajdeep have lost their credibilities and they are the paid Agents of the CON's.

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  4. I couldn’t have read a more precise view of what the general public like me think and discuss in our drawing rooms. Also felt, that I could add a bit more of the same. In fact the word ‘mass murderer’ in the Britishers’ dictionary may actually refer to a person killing a number of others. But with Sardesais, Singhvis and other congress luminaries started using these words exclusively for Narendra Modi, the ‘mass murderer’ is now redefined in the eyes of public as ‘an efficient administrator’ and a great political leader, which Modi is. Apart from all these greatest of emissaries and luminaries of Congress, this complement was also given to Mr Modi by none other than some of those Jai Hinds’ coming from the lineage of Mussolini-clan during the last state elections! May God bless these INC-intellects with induction of some sense of proportion in their cells!

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  5. Recently she went to ralegan SIddi to interview anna quietly. i guess people there does not know Barkhagate at all.

    What amuse me is all the time she was not able to go to Ram lila grounds , for obvious reason. Once everybody was out of Ralegan, and Anna was alone she got hold of him.

    Our advice is that she should retire now and prevent further shame, she got the Padmashree after all, which ever way she got, she got for life. lolz

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  6. I think the total disregard for objectivity is very obviou with several media outlets such as NDTV, CNN-IBN, Indian Express

    Barkha Dutt has been against anyone who has opposed the present dispensation including Anna

    In fact Mr Vinod Sharma of Hindustan Times speaks unabashedly like a Congress spokesperson.

    Wish our media was actually objective and reflected the opinion of the people rather than attempting to shape it

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  7. Undie TV has long turned mouth piece of CONgress. I don't know if many people know that it is the employer of 2 ministerial spouse and going to do the same for a CM's future spouse.
    Aprt from this there is the deep rooted hindu hatred of Undie TV owners and pretty faces. Dr Pronoy is born of a Irish Catholic mother. His wife Radhika is sister to Brinda Karat, wife of Prakash Karat. Barkha's mother used to work for TOI delhi and went to Columbia, I guess.

    90% of the pretty faces (Boys & girls) are children of bureaucrats and devoid of any reality. Srinivasan jain, Vishnu Shom or plethora of dumb blondes. Westernised in their outlook, native , vernacular speaking Indics are unclean, pagans. Not English speaking no..

    People like Modi or Nitish or Shivraj or Yeddy are natives. Brown Sahibs tied to the ruling CONgress clan thru matrimony and "making beds"/Shared interests see a threat to their well oiled and almost in reach empire of loot.

    Jai ho Undie TV & CNN spreading evangelical jesuit agenda in the name of development. These left- liberal, wine drinking , cheese eating monkeys see common cause with Islamo-Fascists to decry and shame the common Hindu by calling him backward, Barbarian but see no reason to ask their loved ones to apologise for the butchering of Kashmiri pandits or my fellow Sikhs for Delhi massacre.

    Aaakkkhhh Thoooo

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  8. a great piece that deserves a lot of praise. i hope that barkha dutt reads it and has the balls to respond to it.

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  9. Wonderful post, hope you don't mind my linking to it on my blog.

    Regards

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  10. One doesn't even need to psychoanalyze Barkha. Her present avatar comprising that revolting face that tries to look smug and that jarring voice that tries to portray non-existent confidence, reveal the truth. She's constantly moving between 'in complete denial' mode and 'hope people don't see what I'm hiding' mode. Who in their right minds would like to watch a schizophrenic alternating between denial, bravado, and guilt? Ravinar is right in calling her revolting to watch. If a momentarily glimpse of her on TV can do this to audience, I really pity her having to live with herself!

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  11. Dirty malevolent face Burka Dutt, answer this line by Ravinar, what you had aspired to and what you have become? You wanted to become a star journo but have instead become, what appears to me, as a drunkard clown with 5 kilo black bags under her eyes, bumbling and babbling on UndieTV. Go on a vacation and drown your sorrows in alcohol, you cockroach.

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  12. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  13. The way the CM bullies his state is amazing and it has become an eyesore for his haters since their endeavour did not yield the desired result. Today somebody raked up Vajpayee's letter addressed to Modi then to observe Raj Dharma as to "the exception proves the rule" which is highly debatable.

    The corrupt cong and the paid media (both electronic and print) scuttles the endeavour of the CM to reinforce the retrieval of his tarnished image by the corrupt cong with the help of rumour mongers and paid media which blah blahs to mountain out of moles of those all opposed to the corrupt cong. The same media and the journalists are observing stoic silence over the ongoing loots with impunity and have they no moral authority to highlight them?

    Moreover, I am not an atheist to ask them to bite their hands which are feeding them. Yet, counter allegation is the weakest form of defense and more to the point admission of the crime ipso facto as alleged. Both print and electronic media were carrying news about Yeddy till he is downed. Then what happened to Shiela who is more rungs above Yeddy? Why this dichotomy?

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  14. Unfortunately NDTV, and especially Barkha Dutt have unofficially become the mouthpiece of Congress. So any positives from e.g. N Modi will be met with incredulous moment of silence, and total ignorance. NDTV's very fabric of "manufactured" news these days makes it a total joke to what it aspired to be 21 years ago.

    In addition the messy background of NDTV financing and especially foreign funding will not stop skeptics questioning NDTV's well known stance against economic progression of India.

    Barkha Dutt's claim of neutrality has long vanished, her past is also a good indicator regarding her political leanings. Her rise to prominence was during the tenure of Congress, and her Master's degree from Jamia Millia Islamia (with strong links with Saudi Arabia) has made her stubbornly defend plights of Islamic terrorism as "rebellion against injustice", her credibility destroyed during Radiagate, and probably the lowest point in her career so far; was applying for court injunctions to muzzle critics and bloggers which is ironic considering Barkha Dutt stance of FREEDOM OF SPEECH.

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  15. SRIRAM SENT TO "VANVAS"; HE CAME BACK WITH "RAMRAJYA"; PANDAVAS "AGNYATHVAS" & BLOODY KURUKSHETRA; THE RESULT WAS YUTHISHTRA'S DHARAMARAJYA; NOW MODI'S "UPVAS" WE WILL HAVE AKAND HINDRAJYA FOR SURE.BARKHAS OF PHONY MEDIAS WILL ALL MELT & VANISH.

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  16. good article!! it is sad that the fourth estate(i am referring to electronic media)has lost touch with reality and is becoming mouthpiece of certain political and social groups. this does not augur well for indian democracy. journalists like barkha dutt, rajdeep sardesai, vinod sharma will know their true value in the future to come. they have dug their own graves instead of being light bearers for our society.

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  17. Since Burqa covered Kargil war (on location) she thinks she's greater than the martyr themselves! Nature has its own way to get even with such unscruplous traitors!
    There's a song in marathi: KoN hotisa tu Kaay jhalisa tu..
    What you were and what did you become??

    Nonetheless, excellent post!!
    Keep up the good work...
    Wish there were more leaders like Namo.

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  18. Last year, in my country NZ, NDTv was replaced by times now...this was on public demand. kiwi indians seem more aware of the real faces of the paid channels than native indians who i wonder why never wonder abt "objectivity'' of the news reporting.

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  19. Bharkha Dutts and Rajdeep Sardesais are poor specimens of the English Media.They are the mouth pieces of those who pay them.So,either they are to be pitied or to be shunned.If they are to be pitied, then they will go on wagging thier dirty tails till they lose their energy.If they are tobe shunned,we can do some useful work which wil expose their hollowness and partisan attitude.So, let us do thelatter.

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  20. Every time Bharka Dutt opens her mouth moths fly out. How does she manage that ?

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  21. Non secular BJP supporter sick bastard mediacrooks...
    if you are plotting a war against media, do it by being unbiased, not by being Modi's ass licking retard...

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  22. Dear Anonymous,

    1) Plotting a war against media ????? (Is this Pakistan?)

    2) Does being Unbiased means to hate Modi ?????

    3) Does the Author in anyway campaigns to vote for any particular party ?????

    4) If Media crooks is what you feel it is then why fear it because the truth always eventually comes out you PAKI.

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  23. abhijeet,
    paki my foot

    being unbiased means being neutral, i.e. not supporting either non secular BJP nor corrupt congress

    the author always writes in the support of the BJP, this site would have been credible if it was neutral

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  24. @ Anonymous above:

    Even the worst criticism is welcome... but words like bastard, ass-licking, retard etc.. betray your own persuasions and not a search for a non-biased view. You must also remember, not everyone needs to agree with your idea of secular or neutral..

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  25. She must have got a 'kick back' from Congress and others for this 'Campaign Against Modi/BJP' much like Radia tapes ..call it Godhra tapes...after all she is a good businesswomen behind the veil of 'journalist'..who runs a good show every day at a channel(News) for host of ads..
    i don't see anything wrong is what she says..its her job and a stomach to feed...what if she says some lies of singles out people like Modi? isnt that what lawyers do at courts or other tainted politicians do..or business lala ji's do who dont pay up suppliers

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  26. Very well thought, elegant article about Barkha. I carry similiar veiws about her and I strongly believe she is very very biased, and pro-congress. Thanks for your views

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