Thursday, December 29, 2011

Media Loses Vote In LS, Battle On Streets

On the evening of December 27 one should have watched the faces of Rajdeep Sardesai and Barkha Dutt. The vote to amend the Constitution for Lokpal’s status was just complete and the channels had more or less reported it ‘through’ but frantically seeking a confirmation because there was some ruckus on in parliament. Opposition leader, Sushma Swaraj, then pointed out to the Speaker that the numbers weren’t enough to amend the constitution. Even the speaker looked at the numbers in disbelief. Rahul Gandhi was up from his seat in disbelief. His ‘game-changer’ constitutional status for the Lokpal had just been ground to dust. Both Barkha and Rajdeep looked stunned before finally announcing the inevitable fact that the ruling Congress had lost the vote. As did news anchors on the other channels. One would have thought it’s the media that had lost the vote and not the Congress.

The Game that didnt change
The game hadn’t changed and someone had to pay the price. Someone had to face the wrath of the media. Well, who else could be more handy than Anna Hazare, the man who has tormented the Congress party for nearly nine months now. Anna had already started his protest fast at the MMRDA grounds in Mumbai but crowds were low compared to his earlier venture in August at Ramlila. With nothing else to lean on, the media had already declared the protest at MMRDA a fail! On December 28, the Queen was angry and the clown prince had disappeared to the potato fields again. The Lokpal bill was still hanging for approval from the Rajya Sabha. And the media was left debating the low attendance at MMRDA.

Talk about low attendance! A man who read out a written speech in zero hour and heralded his own meaningless idea of ‘constitutional status’ for Lokpal as a ‘game-changer’ was mostly missing from parliament. Except for second hand news Rahul Gandhi had no way of knowing what was going on there. His second appearance in parliament was for the amendment vote. That failed! And he probably didn’t even know why it had failed till someone had pointed out to him the reasons. Bhupendra Chaube of CNN-IBN wailed the best for RG when he asked Jagdambika Pal (Cong): “How could this happen, how can the Congress defeat Rahul Gandhi’s own amendment?” It almost sounded like Chaube and CNN-IBN had faced defeat themselves. Sonia Gandhi, of course, blamed the BJP and later even stated “Cannot trust the BJP”! I couldn’t help laughing at her joke. Since when did she ‘trust’ the opposition to pass silly amendments desired by the ruling party or specifically Rahul Gandhi? 

And to her credit she did ‘debate’ the bill very hard. She breathed fire and ice in the parliament over the Lokpal bill. No? Don’t believe me, believe this pic from The Hindu and the caption below. That’s how the media paints and portrays the queen. The Hindu's caption read: "A TV grab of Congress president Sonia Gandhi participating in a debate on the Lokpal Bill in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday". If you saw the same pic and caption three years later you’d think she gave the greatest speech in the parliament.

Something had to be done. So the media turned their attention to Anna and MMRDA and by the evening on December 28 they had declared his protest a complete failure. The biggest rant against Anna Hazare came from Shiv Aroor of Headlines Today. Yes, the same journalist who is keen to know Anna’s views on pornography. The others weren’t far behind. A female journalist in her screeching voice asked Anna if “he was against Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi or against the Congress”. Such was the curiosity! NDTV played that question over and over again on their channel. Even the best minds at NDTV cannot fathom that people identify the Gandhis and Congress as being the same and therefore Anna’s attack against them on corruption is not entirely misdirected. Another vociferous journalist asked Anna if “BJP was his biggest enemy today”. Unfortunately, Anna’s answer couldn’t have gone down too well with the brokeress when he said “the biggest enemy today is the Congress”.

Since August, the media despite covering Anna’s protests would not have wanted him to succeed. Channels like NDTV and CNN-IBN even showered him and his team with sham awards. Those awards were like knives through hot butter except TeamAnna will realise that only in hindsight. TeamAnna had taken over the turf which the media had considered all of its own and these civil idiots had no business to campaign for any cause. Justice for this, justice for that has to be media monopoly, theatre has to be media monopoly, policy directions are media monopoly, national debates are media monopoly. So, when a daring old village idiot with a few assistants steals their cheese naturally they would be terribly distraught. And the failure of the amendment vote in LS and the lower crowds at MMRDA were perfect for the media to lash out at the failing anti-corruption movement of Anna. For months though the likes of Shekhar Gupta and Tavleen Singh have done their very best to tarnish the movement calling TeamAnna fascists and anarchists. TeamAnna has made many mistakes and they will be learning. But the biggest mistake they made was letting the govt get away when they had them by the scruff of their necks in August. They should have finished the task then and not left it to later. They did not reckon with the cunning ways of the Congress and the govt.

Right now, the Congress and the media are trying very hard to pin the blame on the opposition parties should the Lokpal bill fail in Rajya Sabha. No one, no one has been even sure that the Congress was sincere in passing the Lokpal bill. Ram Jethmalani even went on to say that the Lokpal did not need a constitutional status to be effective or successful. I have to agree that it doesn’t. This nonsensical ploy brought about by the private wet dreams of Rahul Gandhi was a diversion right from the start.

The single biggest bone of contention in Lokpal was the status of CBI on whether it should be under Lokpal or not. Ordinary people believe, as do many leaders, that corruption cases are used, misused and buried at the convenience of the party in power with the manipulation of CBI. If the CBI were truly independent or out of govt control even many media broking houses may have seen a fair bit of trouble. Media has to even thank the opposition leader Sushma Swaraj for keeping them out of the Lokpal. What happens in Rajya Sabha today will unravel in due course of the day. But the media, more than the Congress, behaves as if it has been defeated in Loksabha on the constitution amendment bill. That would be terrible then, Congress being beaten in LS and being beaten on the streets by Anna & Co. As a last resort Congress could call on Rajdeep and Barkha to broker a deal with the BJP.


  1. Dear Ravinar,

    Actually the Media & the Congress are in very vulnerable situation & hence trying more harder to find a punching bag. Earlier it used to be RSS, then Mr Modi, now Mr Anna Hazare. When the Congress led govt did not accept even a single amendments on Lokapal from the BJP & Left, how can they blame the opposition when their own 13 MP's were absent? Italian Mama's outcry was highlighted by the News channels as if the BJP has committed some national atrocity! The actual reason for Failure of Team Anna's 3rd Fast was due to the fact that it was ill timed. The same fast could have yielded good results if it was conducted after the passing of Lokapal from both houses of parliament because it would have given people to compare between both the versions.

  2. The bill will meet the same fate it has been meeting since last 23 years. Poor Anna espouses Lokpal and fights with his life for it. In comes the crown prince with a Game changing idea and tries to hijack poor Anna's efforts. Thank god people just ignored the game changing idea. It is now time to change the game changers.

  3. Brilliant Article, as usual.... Yes Team Anna needs much to learn, and yes they need to tame the arrogance of Shazia Ilmi... .. from now on the battle for Team Anna will not be Rosy, surely enough the cunning foxes in the govt will target them from each direction.. Even Team Anna needs to widen their Core Committee and take onboard eminent people from differnt fields, they should take the best possible legal luminaries too instead of only relying on Bhushan's..

  4. Media, whether TV Channels or Press, that are controlled by foreign interests, will never focus on national interest, though they will show as if they are interested. Daily lies are fed in the name of news, distorted articles published in the name of investigation jouirnalist, plain truths burried; Their prime interest lies in controlling the Govt by back door, in turn install their own puppets for such and such ministries. Their self aim and goal is to install a puppet PM who will dance to their tune and benefits. Thats how they have swallowed the Indian Media to inactive and corporates having hand in glove with them made the Indian democracy a mockery. All the media is now controlled foreign owners with vested interested in Indian economy and Indian funds. They are purely to be blamed for every single attrocity, loot, black money etl. that are stemmed out from their own distorting write ups. Shame on Indian Media, whether TV or press.

  5. When the fourth Estate is corrupt and supports criminals, there is not much left to talk about democracy in India. The seed of corruption was sown by non-other than our first PM. It flourished under his egoist daughter. Rajeev did not get much opportunity, but if we believe Wikileaks, he did wash his hands in bahati Ganga. Whatever was left has been finished in last 7-8 years, thanks to Madam and bunch of sub-servient eunuchs. The Police is corrupt with Babus in ministries and there are signs of corruption among judges and army men. Our only saviour is Anna. Let us make sure that we dig a big hole, with him, for the corrupt politicians, babus, ministers, judges and media persons, and bury them sooner than later.

  6. the media totally ignored the speech given by Ram Jethmalani, who exposed the UPA on hiding the black money launderers names.

    when he gave facts the UPA started shouting.

    media is ignoring the fact that RAJIV GANDHI was the highlight of a 1991 swiss journal expose on the top black money launderers in suise. the country must know the truth.

  7. Wow. the best article I have read so far. I should admit.. that while searching for an article which Ram Jethmalani mentioned in his speech in RS. I came across your page.

    If you remember when there were only few channels, the news which came through was true and perfect. However, now in order to get on the top of TRP and get more revenue & ads in order to run their channel.. Media has gone to an extent where now it has no chance to come back.

    We people of India, today or yesterday how many of us are watching or do watch DD NEWS, current RS proceedings on RSTV or LS TV

  8. FYI..The Ram Jethmalani's article .. is,7222.0.html

  9. Many people say that on 29th evening CNN-IBN precisely predicted the course of actions and who-will-do-what in RS towards the end of the day. Also, the names suggested by them as who would create trouble, were found to be true.
    Is it possible that CNN-IBN were provided with the blueprint of the game-plan? Was that a bill-fixing (as in match-fixing)???

  10. Dear Ravinar,

    It was funny to see that most of Mainstream Media channels were trying to divert attention by putting the arrival of cyclone " Thane " as the Headlines on the very next morning of Lokapal Debate fiasco in Rajya sabha!!!!!

  11. rahul gandhi's wet dreams had cold water poured over them. hah !

  12. The icing on the cake was RJ's comment on "whole media being bought by the Congress...'.
    Offstumped has commented on how a similar bill was brought out in Indonesia with disastrous consequences.

  13. Team Anna's efforts had its own natural burial considering the recent episode. It was harnessed by Sonia herself to sidetrack Ramdev's endeavour. The latter's efforts were miffed by sweet tongued but silly hearted. So the only recourse available for the common is Swamy.

    Moreover, regarding the media, the central government is in all seriousness contemplating to pass an ACT during the next five year plan which is not to utilize for protecting the nation but the looters; else when the security of the nation was boiling, no one cared but when the murky affair scam came to light through internet and SMS, they are burning more of the midnight oil.

    Yet, Mr. clean is maintaining MM mode for all the happening when the mother land is plundered and the religion cropped up only to protect against alien but now?


    This Kingshuk Nag needs to be shaken out of his stupor. Biggest Chattu of Congress. See the replies to his articles.

  15. bang on target... the article is very articulating for it always brings out the truth out in the limelight. i have made a small attempt to put my views on this issue, though not a paragon write like you, tried my best to put out my vew Mr.Ravinar..
    if possible, do reflect... :)

  16. Not one word from the Slimes or the rest of the ELM on how bad the bill is. Instead, its' about re-introducing the same bill, the Clown Prince increasing his team strength in the Rajya sabha etc etc

  17. Glad to know that Im not the only one who found the MSM handling of the entire issue sick! Aside from the nonsensical live coverage towards the end, the follow up coverage is also blatantly biased. NDTV has only an edited version of Ram Jethmalani's speech, while Sagarika Ghose had the nerve to talk about conflict of interest and asks why black money is relevant to the Lokpal debate. Pathetic.


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