(This is a MaxiPost)
#ShameOnArunJaitley trended at the top on Twitter on April 14. He should be wondering why although I don’t think he really gives a damn. There are politicians who are mass leaders, like Narendra Modi, and there are politicians with nothing who have to survive by cultivating friends in the Lutyens Scotch circuit of which the media Presstitutes form an important component. The reason for the shame-trend for Arun Jaitley was another appearance with Barkha Dutt on NDTV. This trend was not hammered by opponents of BJP but their own supporters. It is not so much contempt for Jaitley as it is for Barkha Dutt and NDTV. This channel is known to be anti-Modi, anti-BJP and a Congress doormat. For me, all that is less important. For me, it is that NDTV is anti-Hindu, an anti-national criminal channel which needs to be prosecuted for multiple reasons. This lovey-dovey nonsense between Jaitley of BJP and Barkha with frequent “exclusive” interviews was going to repulse BJP supporters at some point. And it reached boiling point on April 14.
AJ has no sense of public sentiments or his ear to the ground. Imagine, the guy lost an election when there was a Modi-wave across the country. People are certain Navjot Singh Siddhu (the former MP from Amritsar) would have waltzed home with a victory. His cultivation of media crooks to rally for him has long been known in political and media circles. Now it’s known to the general public as well. His official residence is 9, Ashok Road but that operates as the warehouse of BJP’s media cell. AJ doesn’t stay there. Nobody in the Opposition or in the media ever asks why. Even among BJP supporters AJ was suspected to be a manipulator and part of what is known as D4. Here is what one report states:
Do read the report I have linked. It quotes articles that explain the loss of BJP in 2004 and the downslide of the party from thereon. It took Modi to revive its fortunes. Let’s take a detour and read this little clip:
“Speaking to property dealers and neighbourhood home-owners, I compiled a list, which may not be exhaustive, of properties reportedly owned by Gupta or registered in his name. There is the Delhi house near IIT, and the farmhouse in Saanp Ki Nagli, which Gupta said he purchased from Maneka Gandhi’s family in 1995. Two villas (one a 1,005-square-yard plot) in EMAAR-MGF developments in Gurgaon. Also in Gurgaon, a plot in DLF’s Alameda project and a house in the National Media Centre. The Malcha Marg apartment. A house in Asiad Village, which Gupta gifted his daughter after she got married (the ceremony was at Arun Jaitley’s official residence). He also partially funded his son’s residence in London”.
That little burst is from a huge dossier on Shekhar Gupta that Caravan magazine carried in December 2014. The matter of SG and his extraordinary wealth is a different story. SG is also a Congress Presstitute but just focus on one line in that para – the daughter’s marriage – “the ceremony was at Arun Jaitley’s residence”. No matter what your political persuasion, almost all major Presstitutes were in the durbar of AJ. But there are also many in the Presstitute Club of India who are deeply wary of how AJ manipulates media through his durbaris so to say. Here is one who echoes many others in the media as soon as AJ was made I&B minister:
Prof R Vaidya of IIM Bangalore is a BJP sympathiser and often defends the party policies on TV and in writing. This tweet (which I think was during another of those 923676 exclusive AJ-BD interviews) should tell you something:
Fantastic, isn’t it? And it is true as well. I remember two instances when AJ was trashed in the media though. One was a TOI blog which accused him of accumulating bogus funds and AJ responded with a notice and TOI had to retract. The other, a recent one, was a paper that accused him of using Naval choppers for private use in Goa. This too he rejected and the paper retracted. So, let us say AJ isn’t corrupt and is right in defending his reputation on that count perfectly. But for a person who defends his reputation so ferociously what does he do about crimes by media? And I am not talking petty crimes like bias or bogus reporting like the Rambo type. I am talking serious financial crimes which is what public figures have been accusing NDTV of. Earlier it trended as #NDTVPCWedding which referred to former FM P. Chidambaram. Since then many people have written to AJ to act against NDTV including Ram Jethmalani, KPS Gill and most importantly S. Gurumurthy.
S. Gurumurthy is a columnist and a CA and a BJP sympathiser. He tweeted a whole dossier about NDTV’s FinCrimes and how an IT officer was victimised on various counts by the PC-NDTV combine. In case you haven’t seen it, someone has Storified the whole dossier and it makes terrible reading. The story is titled NDTV Tax frauds and it has been going on since long. Apart from abusing Modi, creating fake quotes and headlines and a lot of other bogus reports NDTV has routinely indulged in anti-BJP slander. Before the LS elections BJP banned it for a few days for a bogus tweet that quoted Sushma Swaraj. Has AJ forgiven all other crimes of this criminal channel? Barkha, in particular, with whom AJ appears ever so frequently has been named by Modi as one of the inciters of tension in parts of Gujarat in 2002. I know it because I’ve watched both Barkha and Rajdeep inciting passions on TV quite viciously at that time. Barkha’s histrionics and excessive inflammatory reporting is quite well known to all.
Let’s put the past behind. Recently, in the Church attack fraudulent reporting NDTV was the one who carried out a sinister campaign against BJP and ModiSarkar. The way NDTV concocted stories is acceptable to AJ? Or is he just pure blind and only his pathetic self-survival is important. Read Church Crimes – How NDTV concocts anti-Hindu slander. Also read NDTV’s Wanton Treachery and their crimes against Modi and India as a whole. It was NDTV that concocted all the fraudulent church attack stories and linked it to Ghar Wapsi. And AJ goes to that channel and answers to Barkha’s crap questions? And it is not that he merely answered them, there is something even more stupid. Here you go; read this tweet as carefully as you can:
On the face of it there is nothing wrong with the tweet. Is there? But he says “most” church attacks weren’t communal? So there were some that were communal? Anyway, let’s not indulge in nitpicking – that may just be bad wording because he picked it up from NDTV’s text. But here’s a question that is very serious:
This is a minister with a mic and the entire media ears at his command. He says the church attacks weren’t communal and seeks media to tell the truth and who does he quote? He quotes himself with a Via NDTV! Is this guy saying he wouldn’t have tweeted this or made this statement in a presser unless his stupid Town-hall with Barkha had happened? Is this what ministers do? This is nothing short of tomfoolery. He is quoting his own statement and crediting the source to NDTV when he should have made this statement much earlier and demanded media to speak the truth because the whole church-attack campaign by NDTV and others was fraudulent and agenda-driven. Is he also implying foolishly that he would have never made this statement if the NDTV Townhall crap had never happened? Is this the responsibility he owes to the people? This statement should have been publicly made to the entire media by him or some responsible minister in the govt much earlier when facts were out. This goes as VIA NDTV as if the criminal channel which concocted the fraud was the one to bring home the truth. Tragic, simply tragic! It didn’t end there, AJ made another grand statement:
Is that so? Let’s see – NDTV (earlier under StarNews) has been abusing BJP since 1999 (from the Kandahar episode that I remember), then 2002 for a decade, calling people on their show who called Modi mass-murderer and other names. Their bimbos rapped even the SC (with a UK MP) when it found no case against Modi, they’ve concocted all kinds of fake statements attributing them to BJP leaders, they concocted and internationalised the fake church-attack story and even got a lying Nun from Sophia College to brand ModiSarkar as the Nazi regime and this same Barkha defended that too. Did you look away? No! On the contrary you appear all too frequently on this channel like used cars keep appearing in the parking lot of resale-cars. Look away? Who are you; the new Mahatma as the satire pic suggests?
What is the job of an I&B minister? To hand out govt doles to select media houses and buy friendship, loyalty and favourable coverage? Doesn’t the minister have any responsibility to try and create a truly autonomous body (instead of self-appointed media crooks) which will act as a Watchdog over media crimes? That media excesses with lies, fraudulent and defamatory reports warrant stringent punishment? If you want to look the other way when media commits excesses then quit your job as I&B minister and let someone who is concerned about our corrupt media take over. You can keep your durbar and still enjoy it but let someone else do some sincere work on the media front. Nobody is calling for vengeance but the corrupt Indian media does seriously need a watchdog with powers and not stupid coffee shops like PCI or NBA.
And then on the question of Gen VK Singh making that Presstitutes comment about some media folks AJ tells Barkha he shouldn’t have used the word. Why? That term has found major acceptance with the public because that’s what the journos close to AJ really are. Why trash your colleague in public? You could have politely said it was just a sarcastic expression or it was VKS’ personal opinion off the cuff. AJ shirked the question over #BazaruMedia it seems. Is that a more acceptable term for him for the Presstitutes? I guess one of the serious drawbacks of AJ is that he has no connection with people on the ground or ordinary people. He still seems to be in the Lutyens club where media durbaris are his best sources and informers. Someone tweeted a very stinging description of AJ’s survival philosophy and I consider it pretty close to the truth:
Pretty harsh tweet but unelected and unelectable people do need the crutches of media to survive in the Lutyens Club of politics. And do people develop a general random dislike of someone’s practices? Would AJ believe that people form perceptions about him for no rhyme or reason? If so, why would people like Hartosh Bal or TheAshutosh and many others in the media also form similar perceptions? The only logical answer I can think of is that AJ has developed proximity to a coterie of Presstitutes that brings about such contempt for him as #ShameOnArunJaitley. Others from BJP also appear on NDTV and other channels. Some get criticised for being silly on TV. AJ is hardly silly on TV or in the Parliament or anywhere. He is an intelligent, articulate person. So why is he the object of such intense contempt by his own party supporters? That is something he needs to ponder about but here is a small clue. On the day AJ became active on Twitter I asked him this question:
The above quote is from the late Vinod Mehta’s book Lucknow Boy. AJ has indeed created the perception that he is protecting Barkha and certain media crooks. That is something for him to answer. I am quite positive Vinod Mehta is not so extreme a rumour-monger so as to put down such a thing in writing. I would prefer to go by what he says unless AJ denies it. And if he indeed did protect media crooks then he is worthy of the contempt he is earning. There is a dedicated blog called Sonia’s Agents prominently featuring AJ. I don’t agree with the entire content but why is he generating such articles? Do people hate him for mere fun to write this stuff? And the tweet on the left about alleged meddling with ED investigations into Aircel-Maxis doesn’t exactly paint a bright picture of AJ. Why is AJ giving an impression that he would protect the corrupt? This news clip does not help that image either (If a thief returns the money, case closed?):
Psychological studies on impact of moving images on TV and the shrill noises anchors and reporters make have been on since early 1970s. Frequent appearances on TV do create revulsion among viewers, especially so if you keep appearing on a channel and with a Presstitute that are held in contempt by almost all of your own supporters. They create a sense of fear, disgust and anger:
During the LS campaign Modi appeared on almost all major channels – all except NDTV. There was one attempt to get him on NDTV through Newslaundry. A clever trick that I called Surrogate Interview. A few days later Modi cancelled the NL-Facebook event when he realised the platform was NDTV. If Modi is so religiously avoiding this criminal channel then why is such a senior minister like AJ constantly featuring on this channel? And I wouldn’t find anything wrong if Modi did appear once in a while on NDTV either. It is that Arun Jaitley is seen more often with Barkha and NDTV as if they are under some contract or obligation. And if this sends BJP supporters into a rage it is because the channel has been spewing vicious venom against the party, against Hindus, against India for many years. I have documented their crimes in many posts on this site. Is AJ blind to all of that? That is what is really enraging BJP supporters and those who are neutral to him.
Even otherwise some ministers in BJP are TV-hugging creatures. Nitin Gadkari, Devendra Phadnavis, Smriti Irani are other examples. As soon as Phadnavis became CM he went on a TV yatra. Fortunately, he has got into business and makes less appearances now, so too Gadkari. And these guys, along with AJ, turn up to launch books by all and sundry in the media anytime anywhere. Apparently Modi has immense trust in AJ and that is a good thing. It would be a phenomenal disaster if AJ also turns out to cause his downfall by his penchant to promote tainted media persons. And Barkha and NDTV are among the most disliked media people, at least among BJP supporters. What is happening is that the contempt people hold for Barkha and NDTV is being transferred to Arun Jaitley. Here’s another warning by a BJP supporter:
I have chopped off parts of the pic to keep it smaller. Indian Express recently hurled a lot of fake stories, fake report on Gujarat schools which repulses readers. Smriti Irani and other ministers seem oblivious to the crimes of media scoundrels. What disgusts supporters is that the SM battles these criminals every single day while the media-hugging ministers seem oblivious to all of it and are nonchalant in their craving for stupidity. What happens? This encourages extreme pigs like Outlook to write more crap about Smriti (over her CCTV episode) and then they play victim. This image wasn’t created by me and the fact it resembles someone closely is no coincidence either:
I doubt people want govt to strangle or kill the media. But Arun Jaitley holds a powerful position, even though the public has rejected him. One of the promises Modi made in his campaign is that the corrupt will be prosecuted. People are not impatient and they don’t expect miracles. But the perception that Modi’s Finance and I&B minister is a friend of the corrupt will eventually deal a bad hand to Modi and none else. AJ appears to give the impression he is not too in sync with the party or GOI. The problem with Jaitley, as it was with his close friend and former FM Chidambaram, who has the title of “Friend, father and philosopher of black money” by Ram Jethmalani, is that AJ gives that impression. PC had to eventually make a disgraceful exit from electoral politics. Don’t wish for such titles.