Monday, November 29, 2010

Lobby Girl Journalism of Burkha Dutt and NDTV: Professional Misconduct in evidence

I have always been extremely critical of the kind of phony journalism represented by Burkha Dutt and her ilk who are patronised by NDTV. I have already written about the manner in which Burka Dutt was awarded the Padma Shri by the UPA government and I am sure that the award was for favours rendered to powerful people in the UPA. The fashionably strident line taken against the BJP itself is a dead giveaway. The BJP is not given the same sort of kid glove treatment that the Congress and the Gandhi Dynasty receive. The BJP will have to be portrayed as a wayward party unfit to govern and all the crimes of the Congress including the 1984 massacre of the Sikhs in New Delhi pushed under the carpet. Such lop sided journalism is not what is expected in a country that claims to have a free press. The stranglehold of the corporate interests over NDTV is evident from the fact that its coverage of the Spectrum 2-g scandal was very muted and while politics takes a large share of the time of NDTV, it hardly cares to scrutinise the corporate houses who are probably funding NDTV. I always wonder how NDTV can pay its stable of beauties masquerading as Journalists when for the past 20 years of its existence the TV has been in the red. How does the channel manage its everyday expenses and maintain a staff of white elephants including its "Group Editor" who probably can have a successful career as a corporate lobbyist.

The context of the telephonic conversation between Niira Radia and Burkha Dutt is very clear. There is a stalemate over the choice of candidates for the cabinet especially since T R Baalu's name is unacceptable to the Prime Minister. Burkah Dutt offers to telk to them meaning the Congress and lobby the Congress to get A Raja the post of Telecom Minister. I do know that the vernacular media is deeply embedded in the power structures at the state level. Now it appears that even the so-called English Press which had always fancied itself to be above the "moffusil wallah" is also part and parcel of the embedded "free press". Burkah Dutt's defence that she tweeted is also riven with contradictions. She cannot now claim that she was going along in order to extract information from Niira Radia when in reality Niira is using Burkha Dutt as a conduit to pass on information to the Congress. Jounalists cannot use their previlged position in order to pedal influence. Instead of reporting the story, Burkaha Dutt and NDTV has become part of the story, "in a sense" to use the popular phrase that Burkah drops every now and then.
Such an act of professional misconduct would have resulted in the carreer of any journalist in the western world ending. Bur Burkah Dutts and the call girl journalism of NDYV will certainly survive this and other scandals. When that woman host the popular programme WE THE PEOPLE we must ask what supreme arrogance she has to speak for the people of India. She packages the Congress point of view ans manufactures a spurious consensus for the Congress. I hope the Buck DOES NOT stop at the table of Burkah Dutt but it stops at the table of a honest, decent and law abiding journalist who exposes corruption in high places without fear or favor

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