In a post on 31 December, blogger extraordinaire Arnab Ray noted that Media “[Do not report] anything that does not conform to their[media establishments] political narrative, of the fascism of the Hindu majoritarian rule in Delhi, no matter the human cost of what they choose to ignore.”
The fact that most of us, constant news guzzling citizens are unaware of what happened in Dhulgarh is frightening: We know of the riot and the loss of life only due to the information spreading on Social Media. The Mainstream Establishments continue to gloss over the happenings in Dhulgrah almost 4 weeks after it occurred. This points to a political agenda the Media is pursuing.
If for a second imagine if these riots and attacks happened against Muslims in say, Madhya Pradesh. How would the media report it ? What would be the reaction of the great Rajdeep Sardesai, who tweeted with impunity:
Little later did his own news channel, India Today report the incident, probably mindful of TRPs that its competitor, Zee news would have gained. Zee, of course, is associated closely with the BJP and had its own agenda in covering the incident. Regardless, not many have condemned the FIR filed against Zee for reporting on the incident, probably because principles in Media is a rare commodity nowadays. (Credits to Arnab Ray for the structure) The Editors Guild, otherwise the first to condemn any perceived violation of Freedom of speech: FakingNews, a satire website published this report, which might seem to be a satirical piece, but seems to be the real situation in Indian Media.
The Press Council of India, too, has been rather conspicuously silent on it.
All this information, of course has been facilitated and has come out in the open only because of the media-neutral entity that the Internet is. I shudder to think if we had no such source, how would we have known of these incidents? what would become of those who lost their home & hearth because of this?
This is the Great Deception. While the mainstream English Language Media assume itself to be the center of the Universe, continues to drone over the effects of Demonetization & air incoherent discussions on it, the real, human cost of Dhulgarh is lost to us. The belief in Media, of course, is at an all time low, as demonstrated by the success of Donald Trump & Brexit in the Western World.
In Urban Upper Middle Class India, the same phenomenon has been replicating. The trust in the Media is declining because of self inflicted injuries more than anything.
Mamata Banerjee, the Chief Minsiter of West Bengal, when asked what happened in Dhulgarh replied: “Nothing”. From the Hon’ble Chief Minister, though, its a classic answer.
All these incidents create the violent perception of the “tyranny of the Minority”, which will of course, result in more liberal members of the majority community being swayed to the BJP (Eh!, no surprises there)
Ironically, the creation of this perception and the continued appeasment of the Minority community results in Hindutva politics raising its head in Bengal.
In conclusion, Kudos to the Internet!
And I sincerely hope the communal Tinderbox that is Bengal changes.
(Note of appreciation to Sitaram Yechury & CPM, who attempted to conduct their own enquiry, but was stopped by the Police.)