People working round the year usually take a break or a vacation sometime or the other. They hope to forget the heat and the problems back home and at work and spend time away from all of it. Some come back rejuvenated and raring to get back to work, some come back to the same problems they left behind. Nothing changes. Our media friends had a two-week vacation from their regular jobs and had a great time gorging on the beast called IPL. The IPL match-fixing scam worked as a trigger for a vacation from all other news items except for a couple of incidents and disasters. The BCCI is holding an emergency meeting today to deal with the case of N. Srinivasan who will be likely ousted from his position of president. The vacation may end but the billion lies of our media will return to other stories. This is just to record some bizarre coverage of the IPL scam.
At times like these the behaviour of the poor frontline reporters and cameramen turns absolutely insane. They behave like orphaned mongrels fighting over crumbs of food that someone just threw at the garbage dump in the street corner. The uncouth and uncivilised behaviour of these reporters during the arrest of Vindoo Dara Singh and Gurunath Meiyappan suggests they need training on civility first than in reporting. The image says it all. This happens every time the police arrest someone in a sensational case. The reporters hounded Vindoo right into the van in which he was taken away and jumped on Gurunath like a pack of dogs fighting for the leftovers. The siege of Gurunath was so bad that the police could take him from the vehicle to the Crime Branch office only after a serious struggle.
The players mostly remained silent throughout the vacation. The Indian team captain MS Dhoni refused to answer any questions about the IPL scam during his recent pressers. I believe he was right in remaining silent as he is not obligated to feed the media with the titbits they seek. And then Sachin Tendulkar spoke out stating he was “shocked and disappointed” at the events and that he was “hurt”. I wonder if any citizen would say anything different about the IPL scam. But for the media folks the interpretation was different. The small statements of SachinT was used to add more fuel to the campaign and Rajdeep Sardesai was the first get on TV and proclaim SachinT had “taken a stand”. What stand did Sachin take? This is how Rajdeep fools people. A mere statement about being hurt or disappointed is a statement any citizen would make but a call for some specific action would be a “stand”. Sachin called for nothing and now that he’s also an MP he throws crumbs that the salivating media gobbles as a major statement. Numero Uno’s vacation!
The more sensible and balanced statements weren’t coming from the media but from prominent citizens with a conscience. Shekhar Kapur rightly states less than 1% of our population follows cricket religiously yet the media makes you believe Srinivasan’s resignation will solve some major problems. Sucheta Dalal makes an even stronger point. How many of these same media celebs would talk about media houses and owners who are routinely entrenched in misdeeds and scams as is the BCCI. A day or two would have made some sense but the two-week long (and still continuing) campaign of the media against Srinivasan and the IPL scam looks like a conspiracy and a scam by itself. Naturally, where there’s a scam politicians can’t be far behind. None of the media celebs sought an investigation into the Radiagate scandal. Records suggest that Arun Jaitley, who is dabbling heavily in the BCCI affairs to set things right, was actually approached to protect a culprit in the Radiagate episode.
Then there are moments of comedy in every campaign the media undertakes that come as a relief and provide a good laugh. Nobody… Nobody does it better than the duo of Editor and Deputy Editor of CNN-IBN. The Editor is constantly striving for “integrity and credibility” which seems to elude him at every corner and the Deputy is constantly striving to surpass her Social Genius score. The “Numero Uno” guy hopes the BCCI and Srinivasan problems will get sorted out and his vacation can end and he can get back to his regular problems. The “Numero Unee” laments they didn’t tell us how many times Mahendra Karma was stabbed during the Chattisgarh naxal attack and media is crying over IPL. She does have a point. But the problem is “Numero Unee” and “Numero Uno” are as helpless as any other media celeb when a campaign is being dictated by political forces. They too were on vacation.
An article in The Telegraph clearly indicates that the whole campaign against Srinivasan and BCCI was driven by the Congress party and Sharad Pawar. Naturally! There are few tainted Congress members in Indian Cricket management. Rajiv Shukla represents the real power-mongering journalist who became an MP and then a BCCI bigshot. There is no reason to believe the Barkhas, Rajdeeps, Arnabs and Sagarikas are any different from Shukla. They are all Rajiv Shuklas still haunting the media. For over 15 days the Congress successfully managed to throw bigger crumbs to the media with the Bharat Nirman ads and kept them focused on the IPL scam. In the last 15 days I bet you wouldn’t have seen too many politicians or political spokies on your TV screen. They had a vacation too.
In every malicious, hate-filled campaign that the media carries out there is always someone who trumps everyone else with his sheer nonsense. And this time too, it was Arnab Goswami all the way. The man has truly become the symbol of the terrible disease that has inflicted our news media. First he spreads the canard of a billion people being cheated. This is an outright lie that he knowingly peddles for sensationalism. Only morons who constantly sit in a studio utter such crap. Shekhar Kapur rightly points out how many people really care about Cricket. Even if Kapur has just made a guesstimate I can tell you that in most places in India people still don’t know the IPL or BCCI.
There are many places in this vast country where people don’t watch anything let alone Cricket and they form a huge majority. And then Arnab follows it up with “Crusade for Cricket”. This guy probably believes he’s the Grand Mufti of TV and propriety but actually represents the worst in TV journalism. Calling it “cheating a billion” is the way that Arnab and TimesNow regularly cheat a billion people from real news and facts. It is a practice with Arnab to fool people with fake headlines and excessive screaming. I truly pity the reporters like Navika, Bhavtosh and others who work under him. They must feel like idiots having to work under someone who acts more like a circus joker.
The awful truth is that some cricketers and bookies may have cheated but they haven’t stolen your money. They have cheated your faith in the game but not your money. I believe the UPA which has not only cheated your faith but also cheated you of your own money is a far more serious issue than IPL betting and fixing. But the media can be silenced with a fair share of crumbs as we have come to learn. Now that this IPL campaign of a billion lies is nearing its end the media celebs will return to their regular job. They will return to “Hunting season” which is another way of protecting the Congress. And in doing so they will manufacture another billion lies right up to election season.