news Thursday, July 16, 2015 - 05:30
On July 12, 2015 Kerala’s latest heartthrob actor Nivin Pauly was a guest at an award function at the famous St Teresa’s college in Ernakulam. As Kerala Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala left the venue, an excited Nivin Pauly fan handed over a cell phone to young MLA Hibi Eden to click a picture of herself with the actor, which the MLA obliged to do. The only glitch here was that the fan was none other than Merin Joseph IPS, Assistant Superintendent of Police. A channel played an entire story on how Merin asked Hibi Eden to click the picture and almost immediately uploaded on Facebook. Their camera zoomed into Merin's phone as she was uploading the picture om Facebook. Other media reports made snide references to breach in protocol. Some even reported that higher officials had reprimanded Merin for her act that ‘belittled’ the MLA. Merin Joseph has reacted sharply to the media reports and put up a scathing Facebook status: “Why didn't I react so far to the so-called controversy caused over my photo with Mr. Nivin Pauly at the MLA function in Ernakulam to felicitate students? Because I don't react to non-issues. And for those who still need clarification, I am pointing out that the pic was taken by MLA Hibi Eden after securing his consent and that too, during a lighter moment of laughter over a shared joke. I don't know why some dubious, unheard-of news channel, which doesn't have the slightest idea of journalistic ethics, is trying to define protocols for officers. For the information of anybody who cares about this cheap sensationalizing, I state that I was a guest at the function, had no "official duties", and it was only in the long gap that occurred while the organizers got the stage ready for prize distribution that all this happened. I had already finished reading out the oath (which was the only task entrusted to me). When such a gap is there, the Home Minister has already left the venue and the other guests on the stage have moved aside, what am I as a guest with no other duties supposed to do? Jump off the stage? Stand in attention saluting the audience?? Or go sit in an available chair in the corner of the stage and keep myself occupied? For those who think that I was neglecting some important duty or doing something unbecoming, I merely ask which law states that one can't upload a photo when idly passing time?? I didn't disrupt the arrangements or cause any inconvenience except perhaps catch the attention of some reporter who didn't have any worthwhile work. The media channels which pander to such cheapness and voyeurism, have my pity. I pray such desperate means don't become the only means for them to earn their livelihood.”

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