Viewers' Voice

The Dog's Tail


This Sunday's Hindustan Times (Mumbai Edition) had Bihar on the front page. It said, "Bihar Village Finds Crime Pays Too Well, Wont Give It Up". The article talked about a village called Rampur Nargadda in Purnia district. Apparently, the villagers take pride in being adept at crime. One unnamed villager is quoted as justifying crime. Did the correspondent of this newspaper see any crime when he visited the village. Actually no. All he saw was a deserted village because most of the men in the village had left to earn a living. Further perusal of the article shows it is nothing but an attempt to perpetuate the myth of criminal tribes created by the colonial masters during the British Raj. What is the provocation for this negative coverage of Bihar in front pages of the Mumbai edition of a so called national daily. It is not that a heinous crime had taken place. It was not that the police had not done its job. It was not that a politician was trying to interfere in the working of the police. Then pray what provoked this negativity? This is especially unfortunate at a time when Bihar is seeing good progress. The Chief Minister is determined to change the culture of Bihar. He is frequently giving the message that we have replaced the gun culture with pen culture. We protested when Raj Thackeray was leading his anti Bihari agitation. We protested when Sheila Dixit made her awful statement that Biharis (and UPites) are dirtying her beautiful city. And rightly so. It is even more important that we protest such un provoked biased coverage by the 'national' media who earn their living by selling a negative Bihar. Media is lauded when they act the watchdog. But here, they are behaving as the proverbial dog's tail which refuses to get straightened. The bias and the neo colonial arrogance is palpable even when there is all round positive news from Bihar. Bihar does not have media owned by Biharis who can give us unbiased coverage. The only thing in our hand is to protest strongly to the masters (read editors) of these journalists who make a spectacle of wagging their crooked tail. Who knows some day they will take notice? (PS: I tried to locate the link to the article so that I can share it with you all. The closest I could get was the epaper edition of HT Mumbai. It is at the bottom of the front page, dated December 28)

Thakur Vikas Sinha