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Amarnath TewaryPatna (Bihar Times): The name is big. Bond. So does the stake and expectations .

Before moving ahead let me confess here that I'm a small town born and brought up professional journalist---living and earning a little in a state capital where the big and the bonds visit either for Lalu's limericks or for, those political figures whose face not only frightens but invites certain dude-like look for metro babalogs and babes.

Oh! yes, its perennial flood, grinding poverty and soft human stories for which they also occasionally drop in. "Just for change, you know'!. To beat the humdrum heat of metro life; feeling to get the exclusives from the badland, boss!".

Anyway, they come, see and do the stories which everyone see, talk and discuss about in the country. Only, we, the smalltowners just agape. Wide-eyed, wide-mouth.

The canvass turns bigger for them, the reach wider and the placement prominent along with the star photo-bylines. The impact too comes imminently prompt and high.

Anyway, like many, many others I too read them, see them… and, search for the storyline. However, with my little knowledge, mean exposure and over-excitement each time I feel failed but repeat the same.

The big name gets bigger with each story. The Bond becomes bolder with byline fonts.

Mesmerized, I like many others, too did not realise when I started idolizing them, aping them, imitating them. When they became our professional icons.

Rajdeep Sardesai, Barkha Dutt, Tarun Tejpal. These are the names of the tribe that became national craze for the starters in smalltowns. Overnight, their persona changed the perception.

They became no less than Gods in their professional dreams. Each word, each story, each byte given by them were accepted as the final word of the profession. Truth.

Free, Fair, Fearless; Truth shall prevail; Kewal Saach; Khabar har kimat par became their tagline. They said it, we believed it. Lived it, loquaciously.

By that time the big, the bond persona grew much bigger and bolder so much so that even our political masters of Prime Minister-in-waiting caliber too came under its infectious influence. In a crisis moment of national stake they prefer only them for their byte instead of the regular ones.

For them their name meant sure coverage, longer coverage and wider coverage.

Their name meant fair, foulless coverage.

They make them believe and they believed in them.

And here they, like us, were fooled and faltered. For, these bold practicenors of Truth came out of their real mask.

Truth for them suddenly becomes an eel--- to take shape and to be used as per its convenience and suitability.

Khabar har 'Kimat' par ! News at a "price tag", is a loose translation here.

But, what they forgot was what I was reading by an American poet and essayist Ralph Waldo Emerson: "Society is a masked ball where every one hides his real character and reveals it by hiding".  

All of a sudden the shock for all those starters, aspiring smalltowners.

The big, bond put under scanner. Journalism was not what he explained.

"….story is not complete…and has many loose ends" is what Rajdeep explained for the reason he chose not to broadcast the tape related to the cash-for-vote scandal that had rocked the sanctum sanctorum of our Parliament on July 22.

We, the people of India, mostly living in small towns---thousands of kms away from the hot-spot are, eventually made to believe that Rajdeep and his team were doing the sting in collusion with the three "whistle blowers".

Mission accomplished and the Channel was supposed to broadcast the tape on the D-day. But, at the last moment when they chose to break their commitment and words the party in question took the decision to make it happen by themselves.

The tapestry of the tape, reportedly, consisted one of the most live drama in India's Parliamentary history.

It consisted, said an aggrieved party leader, "shameful actions of top leaders of the ruling alliance who threw every norm of public morality to the wind in a desperate bid to save the tainted".

The ethics of journalism has been thrown to winds, he also said while demanding that the tape must be on air in the interest of people's right to information.

But the big, bond don is no less than adamant. For, the story is not complete yet !

Rajdeep-bhai, you have let us, the small town journalists, down. You have let the whole country down, except Amar Singh and Sonia Gandhi.

It's a big loss of face for our dream. Dream belied in the glare of deceit and cheat. We're aghast, nonplussed.

Its not that for which we idolized you, imitated you, aped you and aspired to become like you. You've shattered our professional faith.

It's not for that we entered into journalism.

"Journalism is all about to inform people in a free, frank and fearless manner…the job of journalists is over once he let the information what he has to the people at large…journalism is all about truth to be practices in the public interest…", is all that we've been hearing and learning from the big- bonds-with-bold-fonts like you sitting in spank offices in Delhi.

That aggrieved political master is right when he says let the people decide what is their in the tape is right or wrong. To verify the facts in footage is to be left on the investigative agencies, judicial process or the Speaker himself.

There are many such precedents when such sting tapes were beamed in the country and people have accepted the fact, admitted the story and praised the profession.

Actions too were taken.

But, what is restraining you from practicising what you've been living all your professional career is just beyond our little desi ken.

"Risk! Risk anything! Care no more for the opinion of others, for those voices. Do the hardest thing on earth for you. Act yourself. Face the truth", Katherine Mansfield has once written.

I know it's easier said than done. It must be a very difficult choice for you; could be an opportunity to sit in that august House where many amongst yourselves have gone—yes, by doing the same what you're doing right now.

Putting all what they have been preaching, practicing in the name of  professional journalism in shame.

Kya Amar Singh ke haanth itane lambe hain?, Rajdeep-bhai !

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Being an active journalist and in the profession for the last 13-years I've learnt and learnt it very well that no story is ever complete. There is always a scope to make a start on it, the only thing required is your perspective, commitment and sense of news.

Ours responsibility is just to put the facts before people and let the world know what you have got.

I may be wrong but this is all what I feel, a journalist carrying a small font byline.

C'mon, show your guts, do your duty for which you're known for and live up to the people's expectation, our expectations.

I recall Sir Winston Spencer Churchill's famous quote here: "Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened".

Let the truth prevail! Let the people of the country know what is there in the tape, for God sake.



I congratulate you for writing this and making the whole debate public. Ethics in journalism has touched its Nadir and few journos who are in this bracket are like crabs.
In fact, I remember attending a seminar on "Ethics in Journalism" in Lucknow and am reminded of a story narrated to us. In July 1986 when Babu Jagjivan Ram passed away, his funeral took place in his home constituency -- Sasaram. We were told that even Rajiv Gandhi had gone to attend the funeral. All was set for Ram's final journey to the "ghat", however, due to torrential rain the "senior" media battery (for whom a small town journalist is basically a nincompoop) accompanying Rajiv Gandhi stayed indoors to report promptly on the cremation. Since there were no mobile phones or websites, the only source of news was either newspapers or our old time favourite -- All India Radio and Doordarshan. Even Doordarshan had "very few OB vans" to cover such events.
A "stringer" of a local newspaper drenched and soiled, was present at the site of funeral and aptly reported that "the funeral of Jagjivan Ram was postponed for a day due to heavy rains and inclement weather". The story was published the next day, and he was fired. His own bosses did not believe his story when the postmortem of newspapers took place in the newsroom.
I have no idea what happened to the "stringer" who lost his job, but I am sure he landed in trouble due to his diligence and honesty towards his profession. I hope he was awarded when the truth finally came out.
Another incident which I remember was the refusal by the legendary journalist Nikhil Chakravarty of Padma award offered to him by V P Singh govt. This act had elated his position in the eyes of the people of the country. Perhaps no award is more prestigious than this.  
Times have changed since then. Some journalists may not be reporters. Media is a glorified profession and today one would hardly see a "jholawallah in a bundi".
It is not a matter of who did what and why but what remains is the honesty and dedication which would make a journalist a reporter of repute.



Pehli baat, koi political party saaf nahin hai. BJP iska jawab de ki Karnatka me Nirdaliya MLA kyon resign karke fir BJP ticket par election kyon lad raha hai.

Hum samjhte hain ki jaise hamare Ajay Ji ko ek sampadak hone ke naate ye adhikaar hai ki Bihartimes par kya publish ho aur kya nahin ho usi tarah se Rajdeep ko bhi ek sampadak hone ke naate ye adhikaar hai ki CNN-IBN apne channel par kya dikhaye aur kya nahi dikhaye. Sampadak ka nirnay kisi bhi media organisation me antim hona chahiye.

Agar Tewary Ji ko etna hi akhar raha hai to ghus jaate ego chhotka camera leke kauno MP ke ghar me, kaun rok raha tha inko? Chandan Mitra ya Rajdeep? Agar Rajdeep doshi hai to Chandan Mitra bhi to doshi hai jo Tewary Ji ko sting karne ke liye prerit nahi kiya?

Lekin nahin Chandan Mitra, apne Tewary Ji ko khali Bihar aur Bihari ko galiyane ka paisa deta hai aur apne Tewari Ji bhi ‘Laluland’, ‘Badland’, ‘Gobarpatti’ aur na jane kya-kya likhke Chndan Mitra ko upkrit karte hain aur yahan BiharTimes par aake emotional ho jaate hain. Tewari ji agar koi BJP/RSS oriented Daily Pioneer ke pichhle paanch saal ka archive khol ke aapke report ko padhe to aapke journalism ka standard pata chal jayega ki aapne aur aapke Daily Pioneer ne Bihar aur Bihariyon ko kahain ka nahin chhoda. Wo to Shri Nitish Kumar jo ko abb pata chal raha hoga ki itni koshishon ke baad bhi Bihar me koi ek bhi paisa lagane ke liye kyon taiyar nahin hai. Tewary Ji  apne ko ‘Chhote Shahar’ ka batate hain lekin ‘dekhan me chhotan lage Ghaw kare gambheer’, Tewary Ji aapke diye Ghaw ke baare me Bihar se puchiye ki ab wo  ‘Ghaw’ kaise theek hoga.  Haan Tewary Ji koi story complete nahi hota hai wo to Delhi ke us sikchhika shrimati Umaji se jaake puchhiye jisko aapke jaise hi kuchh chhutbhaiye Bihari ptrakaar ne nanga karwa ke bhid se pitwaya tha.



well said tiwariji: Story is never complete  

Hey Padamshri has its price. Right Rajdeep bhai..

Mind you it's he same Rajdeep whose channle went to town on the flimsiest of socalled evidence 24/7 in AArushi murder case.. it's same Rajdeep whose channel beamed 24/7 cash for question episode.. yes even there socalled honourable MPS were involved.. Rajdeep no sane person other than those who have stake in saving the face of congress will buy your argument that story was not complete. As Tiwariji says it never is.. And don't confuse yourself with CBI . It's their job to investigate and take the story to completion.. Do your duty which is to put the information before public eyes..




This story is like press statement of a BJP spokesperson rather than from a professional journalist.

Mustaque Alam


Very well written. I can understand the frustrations of neutral and hard working journalists who do not bother about padma shri's or bhushans, but continue doing their job. It's BJP's mistake; they should not have trusted Padma Shri Rajdeep Sardesai and group after all he is a die hard Congress supporter. All his journalists while covering the day of voting were behaving as congress parties representatives. Its a shame. No matter who is in power, journalists should not compromise on truth or else democracy will die an unnatural death.


Congratulation for a good writing

There is nothing to get morose. Please keep on reporting the good stories. Many have been doing good work in spite of all the problems, so we can also do that in our own way. Please don't bother  about Rajdeeps or for that matter any one.