“99.99 per cent of Indian media is ‘Godi Media’, doing ‘chamchagiri’ of Narendra Modi, showing ‘bakwas’…. TV is making a fool of you, brainwashing you with bogus debates and propaganda”: Ravish Kumar

NDTV India Ravish Kumar has a fan base all his own in modern Hindi journalism, despite the negligible viewership of his channel, primarily because heartland journalists have been  en masse neutered and turned into evangelists for Hindutva’s crudest causes by their twisted owners, managers and minds.

Kumar’s earthy, blunt, no-nonsense Bihari drone can be gnawing for non-Hindi sensibilities, but there is no denying he stands out from the gaggle of Delhi-based anchors and presenters for addressing the holy cow in the room—Narendra Modi—as it should be.

Born in George Orwell‘s birthplace, Motihari, the following comments, loosely translated, appear in an interview he has given to a YouTube channel, ‘The Live TV’.

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When I exhort people not to watch TV, I am prompting them to ask themselves: ‘What am I getting out of it?’ Because you are not getting news from it. Information is controlled. Even if you scroll through a hundred channels, you won’t get news. When you see Hema Malini being interviewed, you are not getting news, just the suggestion of it.

There is no journalistic content on TV. All it has is propaganda. It doesn’t give you anything new. You are becoming ill, tense, stressed. They debate bogus issues. There is drama. Who are these people in these debates? People who do not know their own mohalla grandstanding about the world.

TV is rewiring your mind. It is a creating a make-believe, fantasy India, like graphic artists who paint scenic images of hills and rivers and trees. Propaganda has become its leit motif. It is brain-washing you. It is making a fool of you. If you want to make a rioter out of our son, do so directly, why do you need TV?

The main TV channels and anchors have stopped asking questions. Do they have the courage to question the prime minister’s lies? No. For five years, they have praised him for working hard, for not getting tired. But no one has asked him this: when does he work if he spends all the day at rallies, making speeches, appearing on TV?

Narendra Modi has held 100 rallies since January. If it takes an average of five hours to go to a rally and return to Delhi, it means he hasn’t worked for 20 days in the first three months of the year. He was holding rallies for himself, not working the country. Who is asking him that question?

Modi is the first prime minister in India’s history to ask for votes in the name of CRPF men martyred in Pulwama. In that case, why cannot the Brigadier of the regiment from which they hailed stand for elections so that we can elect him directly? Questions do not end because somebody wins an election.

Before 2014, BJP spokespersons wanted to be on my show. Now they say I have a soft corner for the Congress and the Left. Does speaking of the problems of poor students or the poor make you communist? In which case, why aren’t they talking of it? Uma Bharti said after demonetisation that Modi had become Marx and Lenin.

We don’t questions of those who matter, whose decisions affect our lives. Did any TV channel follow up on Rafale? No, it was The Hindu. Have you seen any TV channel give you a proper analysis of Skill India or Ujwala? Everything, the problem and the solution, has been made invisible by TV.  The propaganda of lies is getting a walkover.

Theme and theory reign on Indian TV. They ask questions like, can India become a strong country? When was India weak? They say, we need a mazboot neta? Do we want a leader who eats ghee and goes to the gym? All the powers of the PM flow from the Constitution. Even if he is physically weak, or coughing, he is strong.

What is the source of BJP funds? It has the most expensive rallies. It has opened hundreds of offices in the last five years. Has anybody questioned them? How come only Opposition parties are raided and that too only at the time of elections? Do you think BJP has collected its money from bhajans?

99.99 per cent of Indian media is ‘Godi Media’. They spend the whole day doing chamchagiri of the Prime Minister and his party; showing bakwas. I will give a platform to the Opposition because 99.99 per cent of media is assaulting Opposition, not for honest journalistic purposes but to remove all trace of opposition.

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Also read: Ravish Kumar delivers a 400-word masterclass to studio warriors

The power of good journalism as seen by an auto rickshaw driver 

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