What India was thinking about yesterday, the fourth of May
The Elections and the IPL has been dominating the news for awhile, but the pre-election coverage by the media hasn’t been exciting. The politicians are simply using the media to put forward their agenda and add their two paise bit. Even the analysis about why Mumbai voters did not come out to vote has been lacklustre mostly…apathy they said, and lack of good candidates. Well, this was always the case and it wasn’t going to change overnight. I still feel that more young educated people came out to vote this time in Mumbai, in much larger numbers than in earlier times. However, there has been a marked decrease in Muslims in Mumbai voting this time, said to be due to their disillusionment with the Congress. Apparently during the last Lok Sabha elections there was a very good response from this community as they wanted to overthrow the BJP.
I thought it would be a good exercise to take a look at what the India was talking about currently and here are samples from English newspapers from across the country. It was interesting to see how different the newspapers were in their content, although the turmoil in Nepal dominated the news a fair bit.
Here is what Kolkata’s English daily had to say:
Several newspapers have been reporting that the Congress party is worried that they will not make it to the centre this time. As for the Shah Rukh story, it isn’t even a story. It’s a nonsensical piece of news, not worthy of being on the front page of any non-tabloid newspaper.
Deccan Herald, a Bangalore newspaper, talked about Nepal too. The other bit of news was about a doctor’s strike, a ragging incident, and at the bottom of the page there was something about an uncle beating up a lover. Stuff of the tabloids. On the extreme right there is some mention of the government stockpiling the antitode to the swine flu virus, Tamiflu. Maybe the real news is inside the newspaper…
Another southern newspaper, the Hindu, also talks about the events in Nepal, and the other news is serious as well. There was more news about the Sri Lanka conflict in this newspaper. In fact it was disturbing to read about an army convoy being attacked by pro-LTTE militants because they thought the convoy was carrying arms to give to the Sri Lankan government. Paranoia, because it turned out to be wrong.
Delhi’s Hindustan Times seems to be on an entirely different tack with some news story about India leasing land in Africa. There is news about an imminent blackout (well, the headline is alarmist) and no swine flu in Delhi they say. The news about Nepal is less prominent.
The Assam tribune has some news pertaining to Dhaka. Border security is an important issue here.
DNA has written something that everyone already knows about. About the Congress Central Bureau of Investigation. This has been coming in all the newspapers of late, that the UPA government uses the CBI to either stall or expedite a criminal case against a politician depending on how badly they want her/him. This is an open secret. And I think the next government, whether it’s the UPA or not, will do the same. The CBI has little credibility today when it comes to investigating politicians or for that matter any powerful personality.
And here is the Kashmir Times, naturally focused on the border security situation and ofcourse the tensions due to the separatists’ call to boycott elections. Amazing that the people came out to vote despite the threats from the terrorists.
I liked the editorial in the Kashmir Times. It said:
Resurrecting peace process
It should not remain hostage to terrorism and
political convenience of the ruling elite
The political elite both in India and Pakistan must understand that the present tension between the two neighbouring countries is not in the interest of their people suffering from the growing terrorist menace on the one hand and the lack of mutual trust on the other. The prolonged conflict has only served the cause of anti-democratic forces and fundamentalists in the two countries…
Here are the two widely read daily English newspapers of India, the Times and the Express…the Times of late has been harping a lot on the Swiss bank money parked there by the Indian criminal class, and in fact is quoting various political parties vying with each other to promise the electorate that they will expose the criminals. No one believes that this will actually happen. Unless the banks which accept money from criminals release their names. I think this needs to happen because developing countries suffer the most as corrupt politicians siphon away public funds. There is no point in World Bank giving donations to poor countries, they should instead apply pressure to stop politician criminals from stashing away their loot in safe havens. Possessing stolen property is a crime, unless ofcourse it’s some fancy bank in Switzerland. Talk of double standards.
The news item at the bottom of the newspaper is about the increasing competition amongst various coaching classes in Mumbai.
The Indian Express has highlighted the same same news item as the DNA. Yawn…
There is an interesting news item about how journalists in Sri Lanka are being persecuted. This is really sad…one doesn’t know what exactly is happening in Sri Lanka, and according to this article it’s not just the Sri Lankan government which threatens journalists. The LTTE does it as well.
Related Reading: What India was thinking on 29th of October 20007
What India was thinking about on the 16th of April 2008
What India was thinking about on the 25th of August 2008
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