gfiles governance awards 2019
Bric a Brac

Speaking to the nation

party spokespersons are the new heroes

THE demands of television have created a furore in every political party. Every TV channel needs a party spokesperson on its evening show. If the representative of a political party is not seen on screen, it appears hell will break loose and the nation will be disappointed. Not surprisingly, every party has a department with these ‘guest coordinators’ for TV channels. It’s a full-time department that tracks the news, reads newspapers, keeps track of tweets and so on. The job of the media department and these so-called spokespersons starts from the morning. This new breed of politicians dresses up in the morning and is ready to speak to the nation from morning till evening. They are the new heroes of their political parties. However, being in the opposition, the Congress is faced with a peculiar predicament. The party has 44 members of Parliament and 64 spokespersons. The guest coordinators are in great demand and are not averse to throw their weight around. They have their own whims and fancies and they send those spokespersons who take care of their personal needs. Nobody wants to go to the less-known TV channels and popular TV channels have their own choice of leaders. When the controversy about Robert Vadra, Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law, was highlighted by the media, the instructions were to defend Vadra but some spokespersons refused, stating that Vadra was not a Congress party member and officially the Congress was under no obligation to defend him. Those who dared to defy the diktat have been shown the door. Sources even disclose that some newly recruited spokespersons brief senior team members on how to behave, speak and deal with the media.

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