Thursday, May 6, 2010

Gazing into the crystal ball...

I don't claim to be a fortune teller, but this time around, I have decided to look into the crystal ball.
Picture courtesy - Google
So, what will happen to news channels in India tomorrow.....? Here's my prediction.
By 10 am, all channels would have aired (32 times, at least) a shot of the army of cops outside Arthur Road jail.
By 11 am, the channels would work up a frenzy asking the same question again and again. Hindi channels - 'क्या कसाब को मिलेगा फांसी का फन्दा? English - 'Death penalty for Kasab?' CNN-IBN will try to be stylish by saying "eyes of the entire country are now centered on one man. Judge Tahiliyani." Gargi Rawat on NDTV will try (unsuccesfully) very hard to make a serious face, because she can't stop smiling at everything. (Barkha Dutt would be sleeping at this time. She would be preparing for a long night later.)
By this time, India TV and News 24 hours (both entertainment channels actually, but masquerading as news channels) would have whipped up some crazy Hindi catchline. I can't quite clearly see in the crystal ball. Even the ball has difficulty predicting these two channels.....
By 11.30, the news will erupt. Judge Tahiliyani will pronounce death sentence to Kasab for 3 out of 86 charges, life imprisonment for 36 out of the remaining 83, and rigorous imprisonment of 10 years for the remaining 47. And all hell will break loose. कसाब को फांसी . Kasab gets death sentence. News for Kasab. Sorry, noose for Kasab. छब्बीस ग्यारह के आतंकी को मौत का फरमान. Etc. etc. etc.
By 4 pm, all channels would have sent their junior reporters to go and interview every person that they can find on the face of earth. India TV will show Judge Tahiliyani's dog frantically wagging his tail. 'टौमी ने भी अपनी ख़ुशी जाहिर की'.
By 6 pm, the channels will have caught hold of most politicians. They will be able to do this only now, since most of the politicians will be busy shouting in the parliament till then.
By 9 pm, Arnab Goswami will be foaming at his mouth, Barkha Dutt will be in fits, and Rajdeep Sardesai will be speechless. Because he would have shouted so much since evening. I hope he keeps a lot of cough lozenges with him. After all, we are all entitled to some entertainment, aren't we?
By 11 pm, all channels will be asking - what next? Will Kasab become another Afzal Guru?
And how can I forget. On IBN-Lokmat, Nikhil Wagle will have dislocated his elbow and shoulder joints by now due to his incessant and frantic gesturing.
And thus will end another day in the history of Indian news channels.
Note - As I type this, I completely feel the pain of each person who has lost a dear one in the carnage of 26/11. Kasab must be punished, no two ways about that. My intention is not to ridicule the Kasab trial. I am only commenting on how the news channels will respond.

11 comments:

g2 said...

I still don't understand why Kasab needs to be hanged! I mean, he came to India to kill a bunch of people and then die, so if we hang him, isn't it mission accomplished for him?

We should keep him alive, alive till he hates himself, if that is possible.

Pushkaraj said...

@ g2 - We have discussed this before. Punishing Kasab for what he has done is one thing. Striking at the roots of terrorism and countering fanatic thoughts is another thing.

Chhaya said...

u were so right :)

Prateek said...

We are the ones who complain about the stupid news channels, and yet we are the ones who help with their TRPs. Wonder who is to blame.

Pushkaraj said...

@ Chhaya - Thanks, but the credit is not mine. Its sad how the news media are so predictable.
@ Prateek - Bingo. I completely echo your sentiments. All we can do is stop watching silly channels, thereby reducing their TRPs. That will discourage companies to give their ads on the channels. (After all, channels survive on ad revenue, NOT on viewer subscription) And only THEN these channels will go out of business. I have started my own bits by switching channels as soon as Barkha Dutt appears.

Pratz said...

u have become pretty regular... very gud!

i feel still... kasab was a suicide attacker... he came here with an intention to kill but also die if it meant that...

wots the point giving a death penalty to somebody who came to die anyway

Pushkaraj said...

@ Pratz - This issue came up with my earlier posts in March (The Punishment of living, and David Headley - Justice Denied or Negotiated). The comments to these posts became a discussion by itself.
I don't think there is a final answer to this.

Vasu said...

This is a fantastic post, and I am thinking every bit as I am laughing! I endorse your view on just ignoring these news wallahs as they don’t deserve any more of our respect, time, or views. What I do is to pick and choose snippets from T.V, Papers and then use the power of the net to get my information validated.
They are much more intelligent than what the public say, but that intelligence is used to promote their own agendas and views ahead of the truth, make their big win connections, nd forge ahead in their careers. We may laugh at the Barkhas, Arnabs, and Sagarikas, but they have become too powerful for any of our good.
But we can at least laugh right, or will Barkha sue us for that as well? :)

Cheers!
Vasu

P.S: On the Kasab trial, there is no easy right or wrong opinion, but all I can say is I am proud how India gave a cold blooded terrorist a free and fair trial.

Pushkaraj said...

@ Vasu - Of course, none of these people are dumb. They can be considered to be 'Rakhi Sawants of the media world.' Rakhi is not dumb either. She smartly uses her qualities, like being a loudmouth in front of the camera, to get ahead in life.
As for Barkha suing us, have you not followed the case of blogger Chetanya Kunte?
Other than stopping to watch her program, you can do some other things - like joining the Facebook group called 'Can you please take Barkha off air?' At the last count, it had 5253 members!

Vasu said...

Chetany Kunte is not a name I would easily forget in my life time. Pretty much a symbol of media bullying the common man like you and me!

Cheers!
Vasu

truehorizon said...

I feel sheepish on saying this, but i haven't been following the Kasab case intently. Maybe that was because i had expected somehow that he'd get the death penalty (if this wasn't rarest of the rare, i do not know what is). What is more complex, however, is whether the death penalty is worth imposing at all, does it serve its purpose, is the purpose it serves defined clearly, and most importantly, is the system why which the judges come to such a decision reliable?
Having not put in the time and energy to think about such things, I'd prefer not to take a stand on the death penalty, even the one given to Kasab. It might look like i'm chickening out, but i think its reasonable not to comment on something one knows very little about.
There is a blog post that I'd like to share here, for atleast in this case i agree with the ideas voiced there.

http://lawandotherthings.blogspot.com/2010/05/on-kasabs-sentence.html

It is by one Tarunabh Khaitan, who is an NLS alumnus. For that reason alone, I'd attach great weight to his opinion - honest! :)