Thursday, 27 June 2019

Is Modi correct in saying media is biased against him in his pre-election interviews?

(This write-up appeared as a 'Quick Take' in The Print)

It is time journalists remove their tinted glasses and see Modi for the man and the PM he is

As chief minister of Gujarat, Narendra Modi sustained a double-digit growth rate and started several innovative schemes, but was never credited in the media.
In the last five years too, Modi started several schemes that benefitted crores of people but an unbiased evaluation of these schemes was missing from the op-ed pages of the Delhi print media, especially the English media.
A section of the elite media sees him as an ‘outsider’ and approaches him with a sense of ‘otherness’. This segment does not see Modi as its representative. They are allowed to have their personal beliefs, but the problem is that it gets reflected in their professional output. Modi is an elected leader and even if journalists are unable to relate to Modi, they are duty-bound to cast their personal bias aside when making a journalistic call.
If Narendra Modi govt has built national highways at double the pace than the last government, if it has built crores of toilets, transferred more than Rs 5 lakh crore in more than 450 schemes through direct benefit transfer, or if it is talking about Dalit venture capitalist fund, then why these issues do not get as much mention as they deserve? If these schemes were implemented effectively, the benefit must have reached people from all sections of the society.
If the media were to be believed, Modi’s austerity is for shutterbugs, his interminable work hours a source of fun, and his nationalism just for show. Perhaps, this media should not be believed. Or, perhaps, it is time journalists removed their tinted glasses and see Modi for the man and the prime minister he is.

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