Firstly here’s a brief on the sensational story that he Arnab Goswami broke modestly. Yes, it was the usual suspect and the usual state, that is ‘Bihar’. The usual suspects were the customary politico-criminal nexus. We may write off such stories as usual stuff and maybe a moment wondering, why the astute Arnab chose a run-off- mill mythical story, instead of a high passionate tearjerker one? It’s because this time he caught Lalu Prasad Yadav in style with pride and with unflinching evidence.
After the sensational revelation of Lalu-Shahabuddin tapes by the Republic TV, the other insipid channels practically ran for cover and pretended as if nothing was happening since the morning of 6th of May either in Patna or in Delhi. In the backdrop of the Republic revelations, the other well-rooted TV News channels poorly presented themselves exhibiting their professional funk and became object of scorn and ridicule among the well informed Indian middle-class.
As per acclaimed colunists Anand Ranganathan, at least 4 media channels were in possession of the Lalu Tape.
Hearing something immensely disturbing. Apparently, the Lalu tape was given to 4 TV channels last year. None of them played it. @republic
— Anand Ranganathan (@ARanganathan72) May 6, 2017
The purported conversation took place on 15th April 2016 and at least 4 leading TV News channels were in possession of these tapes. It is still a mystery as to why the experienced managers of 4 Mainstream News Channels chose to give this story a miss!
One serious fear might have stopped these News Channels from airing the Lalu-Shahabuddin conversation tapes simultaneously. That is the imminent electoral gains the BJP would have reaped in the event of the tapes going public last year itself.
The fact that non of the new channels chose to play the tapes amounts to cheating the nation, killing professional ethics and journalistic proprietary in one go. It was a grave professional misconduct on the part of these 4 channels and Times Now could have been one of the four.
These 4 channels planned jointly took a unanimous call to back off from telecasting this sensational Lalu-Shahabuddin conversation tapes.
If Times Now was indeed one of the 4 channels, there is no doubt that Arnab was very much within his professional limits when he bowed down to the then administration’s dictum in his previous stint. Now that Arnab is not in shackles anymore, he has come out and exposed the Lalu tapes like a fearless journalist should.
Some channels have already started coming up with justifications.
One channel came with a line, claiming that ‘they do not run stories from the past, years old, and they are committed to the contemporary scams.
Now it is alleged that this claim could be pure bunkum as it is now sufficiently clear that these 4 channels were in possession of the same tapes since last year, yet intentionally threw this sensational evidence in the dust bin, killing the journalistic spirit and committing a crime.
If proven, It could be one of the biggest mass cover-ups by the Indian electronic and print media in the most dishonest and unscrupulous manner. Also, we should not ignore the fact that such an act on the part of the media is dreadful and amounts to abetting a serious crime.
Probably such a decision might have taken by them with a view to protecting their secular political parties from humiliation and prosecution. This in another way stalls the BJP, their arch rival, from expanding politically too.