Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Speaking Sai- India TV gone bonkers

It is difficult to gauge where does India TV stand in plethora of Hindi news channels in India, which mostly cover nothing else than banal to Bollywood. Is it news channel or is it gosssip channel or is it live circus ? It frequently runs stories which verge on sensationalism, presented in most bizarre fashion by presenters who are TV equivalent of quacks. While browsing Tele for news, I came across two stories on this channel. One breaking news story was showing a video grab of dark, rain heavy, clouded sky and anchor was claiming that cloud was a giant demon (daitya) in sky. The cloud indeed vaguely resembled face of a man. Anybody who has ever looked at clouds in sky would know that traveling clouds can take many shapes. You can see dogs, cats, humans, war scenes or anything you can imagine. But India TV would have you believe that there was a Giant in sky in form of clouds. Story Anchor (are these guys worth calling journalists?) was repeatedly insinuating that cloud was a giant in sky and then it was asking viewers to call teh cahnnel and discuss if this was indeed a Giant in sky?

"Kya ye eak Daitya hai?"
"Kya apne kabhi aisa Daitya dekha hai?"
"Dekhiye kitna daravna hai iska chehra"
"ye deikhiye dataiya ke hoth, uski aankhen, kya ye hum se kuch keh raha hai?"

The very next day, in another breaking new, India TV ran another video which was sent to it by some viewer (picked from YoutTube as posted above) and which had Sai Baba moving his lips and ostensibly speaking. The Breaking story ran for good 3 hours and Channel was asking its viewers to call and discuss the speaking Sai baba video. What was most bizarre and ir-responsible was the way in which whole story was run with sensationalistic headlines, a ludicrous anchor and equally ridiculous voice over.

Dekihye , Sai baba ke hoth hil rahen hain. Unki Ankhe bhi hil
Rahi hain. Kya Kah Rahen hain Baba?

For an un-initiated viewer, the story would have come across as some sort of Miracle that Sai Baba was speaking in video. It was very obvious that Channel had clear intentions of grabbing eye balls by playing on gullible viewer's religious sentiments by hiding facts and presenting them in a way which would have a Sai baba devotee think that some sort of Miracle had taken place. In a country where large number of people can believe on anything in name of God, running such a story was tantamount to deliberately creating sensation. The height of stupidity was reached when competing news channel AajTak also picked the story and was keen to declare that it had reached the truth of "speaking Sai".

Towards end of the story India TV started claiming that it was showing the video in interest of nation and devotees of Baba and all it wanted to do was properly investigate if this was a real video. So is this what India TV finds worth investigating? An Animation posted on You tube? A video which anybody in first look would have said was work of an Animation? A video which is posted on Youtube with heading of "SaiBaba Animation" ? The very next day Channel again ran same story with "fresh claims" that after its pain staking investigation the truth was finally out and that India TV can now proudly say that it had found out the truth that Video was an Animation. And then it claimed that Saibaba is real and so is this video.

"India TV ko apni Tehkikat par garv " (India TV is proud of its Investigation)
What Investigation? If there was anything to be investigated, why did you moron showed the video before finding the truth? What was the urgent need of showing video? And why present a simple story in a way that it will sound fantastic? Why to run Animation with Sai Baba Bhajans in background? Would India TV show any video sent to it by any viewer and run it for 3 hours in name of investigation?

"Age bhi jari rakeha a jung" (Channel will continue this in future.)
Of yes. Grab animated videos from You tube and start investigations and run them as breaking news.

"karodon bhakton ne abhar jataya" (Millions of Devotees thanked India V)
This is as preposterous as the story channel ran. Do they know how much is one crore? How did channel find out that there were Crores of people thanking it? Did it talk to crores of people? And what were devoteed Thanking India TV for? Pointing them to YouTube?

"India TV ke tehkikat ka asar" (Effect of India TV's investigation)
What effect and on whom. Does India TV think that showing videos of vanishing statues, magicians, flying men and animations amount to Investigation!

"Sai bhi Sach or Video bhi Sach" (Sai Baba is real and so is video)
How did Channel reached on conclusion that Sai baba is real? Was that under investigation at all?

Rajat Sharma, perhaps its time that you retire or perhaps you have lost it. Otherwise how can you be in channel which seems to be infested with dementia stricken people in guise of journalists? But the malaise doesn't seem limited to India TV alone. Other Hindi News channels like Aaj Tak and even IBN7 are equally culpable. At time when India TV was showing Speaking Sai as breaking news, IBN7 had "messages from aliens" as breaking news.IBN7 claimed that it was doing "Duniya ka sab se bada khulasa", "world's biggest expose". Well. What next are we going to see as breaking news ...UFOs, invading aliens, Barmuda Triangle??

Shame on you India TV. Shame on your journalists. You don’t deserve privileges granted to Fourth Estate. If you don’t have anything worthwhile to show as news, you can do a little favor by not creating controversies and feeding on them.


अनमोल गुप्ता said...

क्यों अपना वक़्त ज़ाया करते हो जनाब.. जितनी देर आपने ध्यान से इंडिया टीवी देखने में गवांया है उतना अच्छे लेख लिखने में या सामाजिक सरोकार से जुड़े मुद्दों पर देते तो समाज का वाक़यी भला होता.. सच तो यही है कि आप सब जानते-बूझते हुए भी आलोचना का सुख लेना चाहते हैं.. निंदारस में बड़ा मज़ा है.. बड़ा सुकून है. इंडिया टीवी आप जैसे बुद्धिमान आदमी का समय चुरा ले गया और अपनी टीआरपी बढ़ा ली.

Gaurav said...

Thanks Anmol for leaving comment. This blog unfortunately celebrates what you calll "nindarasa"...

I am not trying to change samaj . neither I am any samaj sevak or writer. I enjoy nindarasa. As you said, "isme bahut maja hai". It is sort of cathartic.

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