NDTV issue exposes the duplicity of a section of media and powerful influencers in India. This lobby has been telling people worldwide that the company’s owners (wife and husband) were forced to sell lion’s shares of their company to a business tycoon. They allege that huge pressure was brought to bear on them to offload their shares because their news channel has been an eyesore for the government. According to these people, NDTV became the most popular channel because of its boldness and unsparing reporting. However, one fails to understand that if its proprietors have been so bold then how and why did they buckle under the pressure of the government of the day?
N Ram and company have been crying foul from the housetops that deal of Roy’s with the Adani group was done by adopting coercive methods. If it was so, then why Roys, the so-called champions of freedom of speech and expression and other conscience keepers of the country did not raise the hue and cry over the sinister designs of the government? What is all the more surprising is that not a whisper was made by the Roys till the deal was finalised. There were, of course, some selective leaks in a section of the media about the deal. Why did Roys not show even a semblance of resistance against the move? The other question is that if freedom of speech and expression is so dear and close to the hearts of the owners of NDTV, then why at all did they sell their shares? If it was a pure business deal, then they and their followers should not tom-tom that Roys were the martyrs at the altar of the fourth estate. As a matter of fact, the owners of the NDTV were known to be highly deft in dealing with all the tricks of the trade. They were experts in encashing their proximity with powers that be and took all advantages for the furtherance of their business.
Even otherwise, NDTV has not set any milestones for journalism. Its journalists have been known for using the forum for their self-aggrandisements. There is hardly any journalistic example set by this channel which could be emulated by the new generation of journalists. Initially, many of its programmes were being presented with the open misuse of government machinery of Door darshan, which was almost inaccessible for most journalists or small-time media entrepreneurs. At one point in time, Door darshan was considered to be their domain. NDTV never believed in pluralism which it advocated only for other media houses or channels. Nobody disagreeing with the policies of the NDTV could even think of being given any space on the channel. If anybody has seen any programme where the problems of media employees or those of working journalists, he or she would do a service in bringing it to the notice of the general public.
NDTV owners dismissed hundreds of employees in one go without even a tinge of remorse. As a matter of fact, NDTV has always championed the cause of the elitist class. The working class was not even allowed to touch the periphery of this channel. Only such topics were allowed to be discussed by this channel, which has been useful in subserving its interests.
One more question which needs to be asked from its owners that whether they ever tried to raise this issue with the opposition parties even after the sale of shares. Clearly, they did not do any such thing rather they preferred to remain mum. This shows the duplicity of Roy’s in which they have gained dexterity. They want to have both worlds- to be good with powers that be and at the same time wear the hallow of being progressive and fighters.

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