“Godi media” busy protecting Kejriwal, others in Delhi excise scam



The prominent members of AAP party are  busy 24X7 on national media spreading the deceitful untruths of Kejriwal having been arrested falsely. This narrative remains unchallenged by the complicit media and they have failed to even ask simple elementary questions about the multi-crore excise scandal, writes former IAS officer V.S,Pandey


Those who obdurately refuse to learn from History are condemned to repeat it. This adage resonates saliently at present. Goebbellian propaganda is rife-brazenly aided and abetted by the media. Hitler’s Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels ominously resonates, “It will always remain one of democracy’s  best jokes that it provided its deadly enemies with the means with which it was destroyed .’’ The media has to walk the talk now. Our fourth pillar of democracy has neglected its critical role in making governance accountable and instead has become  so totally partisan that “Godi” media and the likes have become the norm. Most of the prominent media houses and their TV channels are far removed from impartiality and are unabashedly propagating the agenda of their political ‘bosses’. The raucous so-called prime time debates have been reduced to a one-sided shouting out of support for their powerful benefactors and castigating their perceived opponents.  

This    clamour has now reached hysterical proportions in election time. While the “Godi” media is busy trumpeting the ruling party’s  achievements ,existent or non-existent, real and imagined other ‘principled’ honest  parties like AAP have dexterously managed  the media to portray falsehood as Truth. How the media is behaving or has behaved  before and after Kejriwal’s arrest is the template. The arrest of the  glorified incorruptible CM of Delhi, Kejriwal,  has let loose  a barrage of falsehoods. A phony narrative has been created and is sedulously bombarding the nation ad infinitum. The prominent members  of AAP party are  busy 24X7 on national media spreading the same deceitful untruths of Kejriwal having been arrested falsely. This narrative remains unchallenged by the complicit media. Why is not even one asking   simple elementary questions. “ Mr. Kejriwal, please tell us did you take the bribe or not ? Or ‘’Mr Kejriwal, when you presided over the cabinet meet to approve the excise policy , didn’t you read the lines in the cabinet note where your minister had proposed raising of the whole sale liquor commission from the existing four percent to 12 percent? Or “ why did you need to destroy your mobile sets in dozens?” Or “ Why  were you spreading lies that not a penny was recovered when your people  have already been confronted with the money trail? Or ‘’ why did you lie that it is a fake case when the Supreme Court of the country had already come to the contrary conclusion whilst rejecting the bail applications of the so-called “most honest” ex ministers of your cabinet and other acquaintances ?’’

Instead of focusing on diversionary shenanigans of his party members like imprisoned Kejriwal’s  profound worry for the health of his janata   why is there no focus on the prime questions of his tom-tommed honest governance now exposed as diseased? Why did he  keep on evading ED summons and avoiding questions posed by ED for months? Where did he  get so much money to spend on political publicity and campaigns in a short span of time? How could he proclaim himself and his  party ministers as most honest when  all of them  were involved in so many prima facie corruption cases and many of them were languishing in jail after repeated failed attempts to get bail? The media has not interrogated Kejriwal even on the most sinister accusation-Had he  met the  Khalistani terrorist ,whose video is in circulation , claiming that they had paid huge sums of money to him in exchange of certain favors which Kejriwal had failed to deliver?

This interrogation is necessary for Kejriwal and his ilk. He has to answer to we, the people ,who have elected him. Deafening  false propaganda cannot dress up and cover malgovernance. Some of the above questions are valid for almost all the political parties who are in the fray today and have enjoyed power and pelf  during the past couple of decades. Humungous corruption has become the way of life and culture of our political class and also of all those who enjoy power and privileges. Fearless media must be intrepid ,talk to power, ask questions and make them accountable. The Media must fulfil its  sacred  role- not only of educating people in public affairs but also to  interrogate those in power and hold them accountable. Unfortunately, sadly, this is not the case today.  All are blinded by the favors and privileges received from their benefactors. There is no truth or impartiality in their reporting any more. All the stories appearing in print are colored by the prejudices with decisive political tilts of the  ownership of the media houses. What  preponderates is the propaganda model of reporting, devoid of any truth , serving the narrow interest of those who fund their coffers. The famous American thinker Noam Chomsky in his book “Manufacturing Consent” eloquently wrote-“ In effect, the large bureaucracies of the powerful subsidize the mass media, and gain special access by their contribution to reducing the media’s costs of acquiring the raw materials of, and producing, news. The large entities that provide this subsidy become “routine” news sources have privileged access to the gates. Non-routine sources must struggle for access, and may be ignored by the arbitrary decision of the gatekeepers. It should also be noted that in the case of the largesse of the Pentagon and the State Department’s Office of Public Diplomacy, the subsidy is at the taxpayers’ expense, so that, in effect, the citizenry pays to be propagandized in the interest of powerful groups such as military contractors and other sponsors of state terrorism.” Here we just have to replace Pentagon with the governments in the state and centre and the rest will follow.

In the field of media management, Mr. Kejriwal should be infamously credited  with creating a culture of splurging almost unlimited public money ,running in to several thousand crores of rupees. regularly for a decade or so -solely for his own publicity and to further his political ambitions. The  horrific consequences of this unabated influencing of  the media is  before us . None has questioned haloed Kejriwal -what is the Right thing to do? He, who used to demand the resignation of PM and other senior Union Ministers on every pretext, is clinging  to his chair after being put behind bars in a clear cut case of corruption in which he has been designated the kingpin. Where is the  morality of our hollering  media and the  guardians of our democracy? The nation has a right to know and question their silence.

As the famous saying goes “a lie told once is easy to expose, but a lie told a thousand times can look like the truth and destroy the world.”Kejariwal is currently out to prove his lies as truth. The media must safeguard Truth and strengthen our imperiled democracy.


(Vijay Shankar Pandey is former Secretary Government of India)



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