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Corrupt Indian Media - can they be trusted?

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a-TB

Well-known member
https://www.bbc.com/news/amp/world-asia-india-44280188

BBC news story

It is a potential scandal that claims to strike at a key pillar of Indian democracy - the freedom of the press - yet it is barely being reported in the Indian media. There's a simple reason for that: this alleged scandal involves many of the most powerful media institutions in the country. A sting operation by a news organisation called Cobrapost claims to have revealed a deeply engrained bias towards the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) within many of India's leading media groups, as well as a willingness among some of the country's most senior media executives and journalists to take money in return for pushing a political agenda. Cobrapost, a small but controversial outlet known for undercover stings, describes itself as a non-profit news organisation that believes too much journalism in India has been "trivialised". It has dubbed its story "Operation 136" - the figure is a reference to India's ranking in the 2017 World Press Freedom Index. Their website says its recordings show that some of the country's leading news organisations are willing to "not only cause communal disharmony among citizens, but also tilt the electoral outcome in favour of a particular party"- and all in return for cash. Undercover stings of this kind are notoriously unreliable. The footage can easily be taken out of context or edited to change the meaning of a conversation or misrepresent its real nature. An undercover reporter from Cobrapost, Pushp Sharma, says he approached more than 25 of India's leading media organisations, offering them all a similar deal. He claimed to represent a wealthy ashram - a Hindu monastery - which, he said, was willing to pay large amounts of money in the run up to next year's general election in an attempt to ensure the BJP, a Hindu nationalist party, remains in power.
 

prasad1

Well-known member
Cobrapost journalist was arrested in 2009 for staging fake accidents and extorting money from policemen

HIGHLIGHTS


  • The Cobrapost journalist was arrested by Delhi Police in 2009 for extorting money from government officials after staging road accidents and carrying out fake sting operations.
  • Pushp Sharma was arrested red-handed on 17 November, 2009 while receiving Rs 10,000 cash as extortion amount from a Head Constable at SDA Market subway near IIT Hauz Khas.

The Cobrapost journalist, who carried out the so-called sting 'Operation 136' on several media groups, was arrested by Delhi Police in 2009 for extorting money from government officials after staging road accidents and carrying out fake sting operations.


According to an FIR filed in Delhi's
Vasant Vihar police station on 22 November, 2009, Pushp Kumar Sharma and Pankaj Kumar, both residents of Noida, Uttar Pradesh, used to fabricate fake accident scenes on roads. As soon as the police arrived at the spot, they would, on the pretext of paying money to the victim as damages, ask for change of Rs. 500 or 1000 notes from the police officials who responded to distress calls.


His latest so-called sting operation on media groups has already led to a judicial rebuke for Cobrapost with the Delhi High Court on May 24 by restraining the website from releasing a part of the report at a press conference planned at the Press Club of India, New Delhi, on May 25 after an injunction was sought by the Dainik Bhaskar group. The restraint would stay 'till further orders,' the HC said, accepting the Dainik Bhaskar group's argument that the object of the report was 'sensationalism' and 'sensational journalism.'

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/cobrapost-journalist-was-arrested-in-2009-for-staging-fake-accidents-and-extorting-money-from-policemen/articleshow/64340381.cms?from=mdr




 
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swathi25

Guest
General public need to take such reports of any print media only with a pinch of salt.... unless charges are established though a thorough enquiry.

'Doctored and distorted': Accused media groups respond to Cobrapost sting


press_media%203.2_0.jpg



The Times Group in its response, called the sting operation a “case of doctoring of content and falsification.”

Days after Cobrapost, a website that is known for sting operations, ran a detailed series on how several media outlets in India were allegedly ready to strike deals with the right-wing to promote the Hindutva agenda ahead of the 2019 General Elections, the accused media houses responded to the allegations.

Two months ago, the first series of stings, known as Operation 136, were released. Part 2 of the series was recently published, which shows how the heads of these media houses alleged agreed to polarise voters before the 2019 General Election.

Cobrapost released 49 videos that were shot by its undercover reporter Pushp, who called himself 'Acharya Atal'.
For the sting, the reporter allegedly approached the media houses pretending to be a pracharak with links to the RSS and BJP seeking to spread the 'Hindutva agenda' and 'thrash their (BJPs) rivals' through sustained campaigns, where the organisations were offered anything between a few crores to Rs 500 crore as ad spend.

Some of the organisations that were part of the sting include The Times of India, India Today, Network 18, Hindustan Times, Star India, The New Indian Express, ABN Andhra Jyothy, Red FM, Zee News and Open Magazine.

The sting was named Operation 136 because India was placed at 136th position in 2017 World Press Freedom Index.

Media outlets respond


The Times Group in its response, called the sting operation a “case of doctoring of content and falsification.”
A spokesperson for Bennett, Coleman and Co. Ltd (BCCL) stated that Cobrapost had “maliciously not put forth the true facts regarding the episode”, to mislead the public and to ‘fabricate a scandal’.

Read more at: https://www.thenewsminute.com/artic...ed-media-groups-respond-cobrapost-sting-81975
 
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swathi25

Guest



Is it ideological corruption or pure financial corruption....?


India Today Group has threatened the portal with legal action, while Paytm has assured ‘user data is 100% secure’.



New Delhi:
Four of the media houses named in an alleged sting operation by news portal Cobrapost have rejected allegations that they had agreed to run campaigns to promote Hindutva ahead of the 2019 general election, and favour a political party, for crores in payouts.

A digital payments company, accused of agreeing to share user information to reportedly facilitate the identification of stone-pelters, has denied the allegations as well.

The companies are the Times Group, The New Indian Express, India Today Group, and Zee News, as well as Paytm. ThePrint will name the other companies identified in the sting — ‘Operation 136’, named thus in a reference to India’s rank on the World Press Freedom index — when they respond to the allegations.


The sting


According to Cobrapost, journalist Pushp Sharma went undercover as a Hindutva activist, Acharya Atal, and met people serving in managerial positions at the media groups, allegedly asking them to run a campaign in favour of the BJP.

Based on the purported sting videos, released Friday, the portal has claimed that while some of the companies allegedly settled for a few crores, others sought as much as Rs 500 crore.

Read more at: https://theprint.in/governance/cobr...s-times-group-zee-claim-reverse-stings/63338/
 
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swathi25

Guest
[h=1]Operation 136 : What the Cobrapost stings reveal and conceal[/h]Excerpts:

Would the answers of the persons in the sting have been the same, if an anti-BJP party had made similar offers of crores of rupees in exchange of what is essentially paid news?

Based on the answer to the above question, another point emerges:

Can it be then said that “RSS” has made deep inroads into media, or is the media ideology-agnostic and just cares about the ideology of money?

These questions need to be asked since we have time and again seen how the very media houses named above, have been partial to anti-BJP parties especially Congress and the Left, and at the same time have been highly aggressive towards the BJP.
Hindustan Times ran the biased “Hate-Tracker“, ABP News is run by the same group which runs The Telegraph and publishes coarse anti-BJP routinely, Lokmat is owned by a Congressman. Is Cobrapost trying to tell us that these media houses, besides others who have regularly posted false and biased anti-BJP content, have now suddenly turned “Sanghis”? Or is it just the power of money?

There is absolutely no question that the moral standards of Indian media, by and large, are very low. Many have covert links to political parties, but India has not yet evolved to a stage where channels can openly flout their political ideology, yet continue to report the news. In the USA for example, the audience knows which media house tilts on which side. This honesty helps the audience judge the content. In India, dishonest channels brand themselves as “neutral” while misguiding the audience.
Coming back to Cobrapost, it also does not have any sting on some media houses which are quite clearly pro-Right Wing such as Republic. Or some which are quite clearly aligning to the Left, such as NDTV or Mirror Now. Was it the case that these houses refused to fall for the sting? or did they not give answers favourable to the narrative? Or will there be a Part 3 featuring these houses?

One would also wonder whether these sting operations are actually a mere ploy to keep media left-leaning. Now that some reports and opinions, which don’t conform to the radical leftist narrative, are making their way to some corners in the old media, this sting aims to tar all such views as “paid”.

After all reports or allegations about “paid news” is hardly new. This sting tries to make it political and ideological, thus giving a leeway to those who indulge in paid news.

Read more at: http://www.opindia.com/2018/05/operation-136-what-the-cobrapost-stings-reveal-and-conceal/
 
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a-TB

Well-known member
I do not trust 'news' from social media. Often they are exaggerate or it is just fake news.

Now I feel that the main stream media in most countries cannot be trusted either.

India unfortunately has corruption and the media bosses are corrupt.

Let us question the news stories we see in the print or on the web. Let us check what the motivation of the media might be.

There are lots of negative stories about India's heritage and Hinduism in the 'press'. Let us not be gullible and believe them and propagate them around blindly.

Hinduism has lots of superstitious practices today and there are corrupt politicians. But the media reporting (or not reporting on purpose) are themselves tainted and biased.
 

prasad1

Well-known member
All Humans have "BIAS". Anybody claiming otherwise is not telling the truth.
Yes, India has Corruption (then again every other country too have corruption).
It is only a matter of degrees.

A lot of social media is fake.
The mainstream media is in the business of selling their story.
Majority of Journalist are hard working honest people. They do tilt the story as per the direction of the management, after all, they need their job. They go to impossible situations to get us information, sometimes we do not want to know the facts, but that is not a journalist fault.

Editors and news directors to a great extent are honest and do their jobs.
Let us not throw the baby with the bathtub.
It is freedom of speech, you do not have to listen to them all. At the same time, one should not undermine the trust people have in other professions.

For instance, we can make the same case against Lawyers, Doctors, Dentist, judges etc.
But in time of need, we have to depend on the professionals.

When one is having a heart attack, you have to depend on the doctor. We do have FAKE doctors, but we can not paint all doctors with the same brush.

We have had corrupt Judges, but when you are in front of a judge hope that he/she is decent and honest.
 
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a-TB

Well-known member
All Humans have "BIAS". Anybody claiming otherwise is not telling the truth.
Yes, India has Corruption (then again every other country too have corruption).
It is only a matter of degrees.

A lot of social media is fake.
The mainstream media is in the business of selling their story.
Majority of Journalist are hard working honest people. They do tilt the story as per the direction of the management, after all, they need their job. They go to impossible situations to get us information, sometimes we do not want to know the facts, but that is not a journalist fault.

Editors and news directors to a great extent are honest and do their jobs.
Let us not throw the baby with the bathtub.
It is freedom of speech, you do not have to listen to them all. At the same time, one should not undermine the trust people have in other professions.

For instance, we can make the same case against Lawyers, Doctors, Dentist, judges etc.
But in time of need, we have to depend on the professionals.

When one is having a heart attack, you have to depend on the doctor. We do have FAKE doctors, but we can not paint all doctors with the same brush.

We have had corrupt Judges, but when you are in front of a judge hope that he/she is decent and honest.

Yes, there is corruption everywhere. But a systemic problem that is pervasive at the top undermines an entire institution.
The owners of these media enterprises have agendas and that are funded by bad actors not for a unified India.

In USA I do not trust most opinion stories and even selectively reported stories from Fox News because they have an agenda to promote atl-right views.

Corruption of the media bosses by outside money (evangelicals in India for example) makes them print a slanted stories about India and Hinduism.
These targets the gullible and those that have a bias already. Let us be careful not to become a spreader of such evil campaign message
 
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swathi25

Guest
What is the role of print medias…?


Are they not supposed to act like watchdogs and expose the wrong doers to the public?

Most of the whistle blowing things do take place only through print media.

And there are few news houses who feel proud to announce that they practise investigative journalism…. They dig deep into the issues and come out with facts as to who are all involved in the scandal or scam with necessary proof.

Journalism is so important and significant field hence it is called ‘Fourth Estate’.

In a democratic country it is called the fourth pillar.

They enjoy right of freedom of expression.

People get to know the welfare measures implemented by the Government they elected and it is media that carries the activities/measures taken by the ruling Government to reach the public who voted the Government to power.

Public are very closely watching the reviews, opinion, evaluation, survey report, etc published in the print media.

Nowadays, each newspaper has a lean with some political party, and act as their mouthpiece and we have a very rare news paper that is considered as ‘Neutral’ which is known to published unbiased reports.

Corruption is so rampant that even this print media has fallen prey for it and now we have paid news being published in most of the newspapers.

They conveniently twist the facts and publish misleading reports.

It is money...money....money

I just remember idiom that Caesar’s wife should be above suspicion.
 

prasad1

Well-known member
Corruption of the media bosses by outside money (evangelicals in India for example) makes them print a slanted stories about India and Hinduism.
These targets the gullible and those that have a bias already. Let us be careful not to become a spreader of such evil campaign message


This thread may not be about this topic, but since you raised it I will make my comment.

Just because someone pointed out something wrong with India, they do not become ANTI- INDIAN.
Similarly, someone writes against ills of Hinduism, they are NOT Anti-Hindu.

Adi-Shankaracharya, Raja Ram Mohan Roy, Dayananda Saraswati spoke against the prevalent practices of Hinduism in their days. They were not Anti-Hindus.

If one can not live with freedom of speech, a free and democratic country is not for them.

I am against any forced or coerced religious conversion. Moguls and Muslims rulers forced people to convert with their swords. That was wrong.

Inquisition forced many to convert to Catholicism That was wrong.

But religion is a private matter of an Individual. An Individual is allowed to practice any religion as long as it is legal.

Anyone is free to change their opinion when money can change the party one votes for why should changing of religion be any different.

Then again there are good people in every religion, and similarly, there are bad people in every religion.

What is the difference between a person worshipping KRISHNA OR CHRIST?
Other than the label you ascribed to them, or some financial advantage.

I was against Mother Theresa, but after seeing her work first hand I had to grudgingly give her credit. She was a better person, the lepers she helped were forgotten by the society, their suffering no one heard, Till Mother Theresa came on the scene. To those people, it did not matter who provided them comfort, it could be a Hindu or a Cristian.

Let us check our own biases first.
 
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a-TB

Well-known member
This thread may not be about this topic, but since you raised it I will make my comment.

Just because someone pointed out something wrong with India, they do not become ANTI- INDIAN.
Similarly, someone writes against ills of Hinduism, they are NOT Anti-Hindu.

Adi-Shankaracharya, Raja Ram Mohan Roy, Dayananda Saraswati spoke against the prevalent practices of Hinduism in their days. They were not Anti-Hindus.

If one can not live with freedom of speech, a free and democratic country is not for them.

I am against any forced or coerced religious conversion. Moguls and Muslims rulers forced people to convert with their swords. That was wrong.

Inquisition forced many to convert to Catholicism That was wrong.

But religion is a private matter of an Individual. An Individual is allowed to practice any religion as long as it is legal.

Anyone is free to change their opinion when money can change the party one votes for why should changing of religion be any different.

Then again there are good people in every religion, and similarly, there are bad people in every religion.

What is the difference between a person worshipping KRISHNA OR CHRIST?
Other than the label you ascribed to them, or some financial advantage.

I was against Mother Theresa, but after seeing her work first hand I had to grudgingly give her credit. She was a better person, the lepers she helped were forgotten by the society, their suffering no one heard, Till Mother Theresa came on the scene. To those people, it did not matter who provided them comfort, it could be a Hindu or a Cristian.

Let us check our own biases first.

The main point of this thread is about taking stories in print (web) media and question it before passing it around. Criticizing a government or a religious practice is good thing for the betterment provided the motive is clean. Just because some saints and great people critique does not mean anyone that criticizes is a saint. We have to look if there is an inherent bias.

I did not raise anyone being anti-India or anti Hindusim here. No interest in debating this with you or anyone. Let us get back to the topic.

I will only say this. If anyone or any media consistently highlights only negative stories about India or Hinduism over a long period of time that is a cause for concern and readers should reject such sources for lack of credibility.
 
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swathi25

Guest
[h=1]Here are few cases of misinterpretation.....perhaps of corrupt minds.[/h][h=1][/h][h=1]Media and its ability to give a ‘Hindu spin’ to crimes committed by Muslims[/h]
In an ideal world of media and reportage, all the crimes committed by individuals would be reported as it is, without any attempt to spin the issue. It is plentifully clear, though, that the Indian media does not operate in an ideal world and out of many, one of its crimes being its ability to “give a ‘Hindu spin’ to crimes committed by Muslims”.

As recently as last week, it was reported by leading media organisations like Mirror Now and DNA carried the following headlines – “Bengal tantrik ties up man, rapes his wife, claims he was helping a couple to conceive” and “Tantrik allegedly rapes client in front of tied husband, arrested“:

Read more at: http://www.opindia.com/2018/05/media-crimes-hindu-spin-to-muslim-crimes-tantrik-ashram/
 
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