Guftagu under Bihar Collective
Anwarul Hoda/ PATNA
Senior journalist Urmilesh has expressed deep concern over media eulogizing their political masters and not giving space to poor marginalized section of society and voices of dissent.
Analyzing the reasons for the imbalance in media coverage Urmilesh cited many researches and studies and pinpointed to the lack of representation of various sections of society as the central reason for the omnipresent malaise and the deep-rooted rot.
“There is hardly any representation of dalits, minorities and other deprived classes in journalism as well as in positions of authority in the media establishments. Certain sections who have traditionally been on the higher strata of the society have continued their ominous stranglehold over the major genres of media” he said while speaking at seminar on “Bhartiya Media: Kiska, Kiske Liye aur Kiske Dwara,” organized by Bihar Collective under its programme Guftugu.
He said that Others’ interest simply do not make headlines or probably not even worthy of finding a cursory mention on the news due to the hegemony of the elite cartel has to be unshackled and the demographic imbalance in media must be addressed. A structural shift is the need of hour to make media more representative and sensitive to the issues concerning the masses.
Urmilesh, very incisively exposed the blatantly lethal nexus amongst politics, media and corporate (contemporary owners of the media houses) and how the papers and channels speak the language of the establishment in an unabashed chorus, aptly terming them as ‘bhajan-mandali’ – almost each channel, each newspaper in a mad rush to sing eulogies after eulogies in praise of the political masters. Dissent, if any, is not tolerated and dealt with an iron hand; the recent raid on a channel’s Promoter was a case in point.
Mr. Urmilesh started with outlining the evolution of journalism & media, especially the Hindi-Urdu-English print media during British and post-colonial India and threw spotlight over some of the key milestones in the journey. He specially highlighted the stellar role of Ganesh Shankar Vidyarthi, the founder-editor of the Hindi language newspaper, Pratap, who laid down his life upholding the secular values and for the cause of Hindu-Muslim brotherhood.