Not news without a communal angle?

IN Media Watch Briefs | 28/04/2018

Do journalists not jump on something unless they sniff a communal angle? Three doctors from the BRD Medical Hospital were made scapegoats and arrested  in the Gorakhpur crisis where 30 children died. Dr Kafeel Khan, hailed by the media as the ``hero'' who  had arranged oxygen cylinders,  was  charged with attempt to murder and  criminal conspiracy and finally released on bail last week. After his wife held a press conference in Delhi to highlight the repeated denial of bail to her husband and to Dr Rajeev Mishra and Dr Purnima Sukla, as well as their failing health. In Dr Khan's letter released to the press by his wife, he talks about how ``we'' were made scapegoats for what was administrative failure. But the press  chose to focus on Khan's arrest, seeing it as more evidence of the UP CM's communal mindset. The two other doctors who are not Muslims have not got bail yet. But that is not news. If and when they get bail, one wonders  whether that would be as well publicised  as Dr Khan's release.                            

Subscribe To The Newsletter

Journalists covering the ongoing protest of residents of the coastal town of Thoothukudi in Tamil Nadu were at the receiving end of police violence and found their cameras and cellphones snatched. The residents were demanding immediate closure of Vedanta Sterlite's copper operations and the agitation turned bloody, leaving one person dead in police firing.          

According to this report  34 people who were employed by  ABP Ltd through contractors for different departments, and were fired,  have been protesting outside the ABP premises for almost a month now but there has been no media coverage. Their troubles began when they formed a union in response to not being paid minimum wages by their contractors in 2016. Their union is affiliated to the TMC. They were fired after forming a union.The ABP management has not met them yet. Media outlets approached by the workers have declined to cover their plight. The Labour Minister has lent them a ear, but that has not resulted in any action.                     

View More