With flourishing growth of India and largest democracy in world, one of the greatest achievements is its vibrant media. Right from the era of independence, where power of ink was recognized more than a bullet, media role was seen as stature to bind people together for a common agenda. Whether its print or electronic media we cannot underlay the fact that they have significant power to uproar voice of a common man.
But the question today is that do media realize the power they have? Do they realize their responsibility and the fact that they might end up, misguiding and misreporting a vital issue which might have larger consequences? Do they realize their limitations? Most importantly are they misusing their freedom? The current published article of a reputed print media, ‘Hindustan Times’ seem to the same.
The article of HT reads as, ‘An independent candidate, Shrikant Shirsat, who contested from the Sakii Naka municipal ward in suburban Mumbai claimed that he voted for himself, so did his family members. But when counting of votes was completed, it showed that he had polled zero votes. The fact is far away from this huge lie. BMC election’s site says that Mr Shirsat Shrikant has 44 votes with him. It clearly shows that how a reputed print media is misguiding the citizens and creating controversy.
The time has come when some introspection by the Indian media is required. Many people, not only those in authority but even a common man, have started saying that the media have become irresponsible and wayward, and need to be reined in. One of the basic tasks of the media is to provide truthful and objective information to the people that will enable them to form rational opinions. But are these responsible media houses performing this role properly?
There are number of incidents which have certainly raised the question on the ethics of media coverage in current scenario. The immaturity can be seen in the coverage of HT. Such kind of incidents compel us to rethink and question the ethics of journalism in current scenario. Overhype and aggressive coverage is the new phenomenon of selling news these days, as it hikes Target Rating Point (TRP) giving more business to media houses. Every news story resembles a Tehelka like expose-corruption, sex and violence and there is always a doctored videotape.
The problem here does not, of course, originate in the media, for it is social division that feeds this bias in coverage. But the media can play a more constructive part in keeping the reality of India persistently in the view of the public.
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