news Wednesday, September 10, 2014 - 05:30
The News Minute Editorial| Bangalore| September 10, 2014| 4.00 pm IST There are two issues here. One is the behaviour of the Chief Minister of Telangana K. Chandrasekhar Rao who has said he would bury TV channels that don’t respect Telangana deep in the ground. This follows his earlier statement that he is fine being called Adolf Hitler, but he will do what is needed to stop injustice.  People are allowed to have their own views on anything, but it is dangerous when a person occupying the office of Chief Minister denigrates himself and the chair he has been elected to occupy.  The other more important issue is that two media outlets in this state – TV 9 and ABN Andhra Jyothi – have been blacked out for more than 80 days. We are not required to agree with what the media houses do or how they cover news. In this case, many (including journalists) believe the programmes were derogatory. But like the Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) has said in its order, no law has been broken here. The blackout continues despite this. They are one of us, we are all in the same métier when one journalist or a member of the media is prevented from carrying out his or her line of duty, and we are all affected. Yes, TV 9 is a large media conglomerate that can deal with its own problems, but the larger question is about political censorship in a democracy. Read- Are KCR, cable operators in Telangana wilfully going against TDSAT order to allow channels to air Equally worrying is that there is not much national outrage, presumably because it is a local media issue in south India. There are no local and national media issues when it comes to muzzling. If we can express solidarity with journalists around the world who are hampered from reporting, we should also express solidarity with colleagues’ closer home.  We all speak about the fourth estate. Here is an opportunity to stand behind reporters and media people in Telangana who are being hounded. We also believe that there should be dialogue between the Telangana government and the two channels.  We at The News Minute (TNM) express our solidarity with our colleagues in Telangana
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