Reporters Without Orders Ep 137: TRP scam, Hathras, and more
In this episode, host Snigdha Sharma is joined by Gaurav Sarkar, Senior Reporter at Mid-Day, along with Newslaundry’s Akanksha Kumar.
The conversation hits off with the bizarre news stories, from Jeff Bezos’ New Shephard to the Tanishq ad controversy.
The discussion then moves on to the TRP scam. Gaurav says a certain section of the media, however small, including Newslaundry, should pat themselves on the back for calling out big brands for finding hate-ridden news. He says, pointing to the broader picture, that the TRP scam is an offshoot of the events that preceded the entire fiasco: the SSR case. He talks about how some news channels turned SSR’s death into a joke, politicised it and then came their “Trump card, “miss loose cannon Kangana.”
Then comes the latest in the Hathras case and how the family of the victim is being hounded by the media. Akanksha tells Snigdha about the ugly exchange that happened between the victims' relatives and the media. Referring to her report, she says, “One must also remember that there are certain media houses who have been looking for some or the other conspiracy theory in the case and also trying to rule out the caste angle. Whereas when you go to the ground, the build up to the crime can be explained only through the prism of caste.”
Snigdha moves on to discuss Gaurav’s report on Tarun, a 17-year-old autistic child from Colaba who got lost in a crowd and never returned. Gaurav highlights the gross negligence by the police and the Railway Police Force in the case. After a year, as the case gets colder, the family still has not given up hope. “It’s a story that, I think, social media can eventually solve. My faith in this particular case lies in the power of social media because we’ve seen what it can do from the Baba Ka Dhaba case” he says.
This and a lot more as they talk about what made news, what didn’t, and what shouldn’t have.
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