Bric a Brac

All for fair reporting

modi skips media conclave

Narender Modi Prime Minister of IndiaNEWS organisations earn extra revenue by organising conclaves: sponsors pour in money to get mileage with the VVIPs who grace these events. A handshake and a photo opportunity is perhaps supplemented with a chance to cozy up to the powers-that-be. Prime Minister Narendra Modi was to preside over one such conclave of a leading media house, whose editor some decades back used to fancy himself to be the second-most important man in India after the Prime Minister. The news organisation’s TV channel had been supportive of the BJP in the UP elections but its print products, particularly the one printed on pink paper, had gone out of its way to boost the image of the Samajwadi Party and its young face Akhilesh Yadav. The group had been allotted prime land in the vicinity of Delhi for an enterprise by the SP regime. On the day of the conclave, which was billed as a Global Summit, the Prime Minister’s Office informed that Modi will not attend. Efforts were made to calm ruffled feathers but to no avail. Posters of PM at the venue were taken off and it was tersely announced that the main speaker has been changed. On learning of the PM’s ire, most officers and ruling party persona quietly left the venue. As did the sponsors. It so transpires that the media group was not entirely to blame for the pro-SP tilt. During the Mulayam-Akhilesh spat, apparently chagrined by the group’s Lucknow coverage, the then ruling party of UP had summoned the group’s top brass to the state capital and conveyed their displeasure. As prime land was at stake, a compromise was worked out. Some publicity posters were also printed at reasonable rates to cool down Samajwadi tempers. After the PM cried off from the Global Summit, the management of the media group went and shared the above circumstances. Amit Shah and Modi responded by telling the media group that fair reporting is media; manipulation and excuses of business are not good ethics. g




VOL. 11 | ISSUE 1| APRIL 2017

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