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Media Stifles Voices Of Hud Hud Sufferers

Media Stifles Voices Of Hud Hud Sufferers

There were floods and cyclones in the past… even then, there would be extensive damage to lives of people and property.

The CMs and PM would visit the cyclone-affected areas via helicopters and promise relief.

In the past too, the CM would ask the officials to be on high alert to face all kind of emergencies. Even now, the same process is happening. But there is one major difference and that is media.

If one looks at the coverage by various media channels, one thing is obvious. There is no footage of sufferers. All time is being gobbled up by ruling party leaders and their speeches. And some time is being allotted to show the visuals of the Vizag airport that has been blown away, of lifeless, uprooted trees and numbers relating to the extent of damage.

Meanwhile, PM came along and appreciated the CM. In return, the CM appreciated the union minister and all three are happy to scratch each other’s backs. In the process, PM’s visit ended and that got major coverage.

When asked to talk about the sufferers, the politicians have been maintaining that the spirit of people must be lauded. They have been harping that people have faced the situation courageously. Since all the major media houses in the state are pro-ruling party, it has become quite obvious that all focus is on the leaders and their promises rather than on the plight of the sufferers.

The current which was gone when the cyclone hit the coastline hasn’t been restored till now. In many areas in Vizag, there is no supply of drinking water. Incidentally, there is no one who is looking into such basic amenities and dealing with such issues.

And the media has already started pumping in reports that all is well. The media has realized that if visuals of the actual sufferers and their plight are shown live on television, then it could result in anger and discontent against the ruling party. So, it is smartly avoiding any damage that can happen to the ruling party at this crucial time.

In fact, if one actually takes a closer look, then it is quite obvious that it is devoting less than 10 per cent of time to real sufferers as compared to the visits of PM, CM and other ministers.

In the past, a leading newspaper would totally take on the ruling party by questioning the functioning of the government machinery and about the lacunae in relief measures. It would carry stories saying that the people bared their hearts to the opposition leader and then carry all the images of his visiting the flood-affected areas. Now, the said media house does not have to do all this. It is now carrying reports that all is well and that the AP government has dealt wonderfully with the cyclone relief measures. However, in reality, normal conditions are anything but media show. People are suffering in the cyclone affected areas and their problems are not being addressed. This is the new-age politics of media around cyclone.

And here’s the tailpiece: When a reporter asked the CM about the restoration of drinking water services, the CM sarcastically retorted saying ‘Get the water from your house’. But now, the said publication is not carrying such comments by the CM. Had a Congress minister said these words, it would have torn them apart.

Unfortunately, the CM has been responding in a certain way when the cameras are on and reacting completely differently when the cameras are switched off. Well, maybe that is what politics is all about.

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