Showing posts from March, 2014


March 18, 2014, The Kremlin, Moscow  Federation Council members, State Duma deputies, good afternoon.  Representatives of the Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol are here among us, citizens of Russia, residents of Crimea and Sevastopol! Dear friends, we have gathered here today in connection with an issue that is of vital, historic significance to all of us. A referendum was held in Crimea on March 16 in full compliance with democratic procedures and international norms. More than 82 percent of the electorate took part in the vote. Over 96 percent of them spoke out in favor of reuniting with Russia. These numbers speak for themselves. To understand the reason behind such a choice it is enough to know the history of Crimea and what Russia and Crimea have always meant for each other. Everything in Crimea speaks of our shared history and pride. This is the location of ancient Khersones, where Prince Vladimir was baptized. His spiritual feat of adopting Orthodoxy predetermined the overal

Naked Bias Threatens Media’s Credibility – A Statement by Some Mediapersons

An Appeal to Indian Journalist Fraternity by a Group of Media persons, released in Chandigarh, 16 March, 2014 In a terse comment, Aam Aadami Party leader Arvind Kejriwal said that a part of the media, particularly some TV channels “sold itself to Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) and is indulging in running a propaganda spree in favor of BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate, Narendra Modi”. As has happened earlier in many cases relating to deprived and unprivileged sections of the Indian society, that section of media took an undue offence to the comment that was completely out of proportion, and it launched a virulent campaign against AAP. This section of media is peeved at Arvind Kerjriwal’s remarks that if his party came to power, a punitive action would be taken against those media outlets which have been biased in their news coverage and suppressed the anti Modi news stories projecting his false claim to an ‘unparalleled development of Gujarat’. During his field tour to Gu

‘Medianet’ and ‘Private Treaties’ phenomena

The report of that 2 member subcommittee of the Press Trust of India, authored by Paranjoy Guha-Thakurta and Srinivas Reddy: The ‘Medianet’ and ‘Private Treaties’ phenomena In pursuing its quest for profits, it can be argued that certain media organizations have sacrificed good journalistic practices and ethical norms. Individual transgressions — reporters and correspondents being offered cash and other incentives, namely paid-for junkets at home or abroad in return for favourable reports on a company or an individual – were, until recently, considered more of an aberration than a norm. News that was published in such a manner was suspect because of the fawning manner in which events/persons were described while the reports gave an impression of being objective and fair. The byline of the journalist was stated upfront. Over the years such individual transgressions became institutionalised. In the 1980s, Bennett, Coleman Company Limited (BCCL), publishers of the T

Press Council of India on Paid News in 2009 General Elections

The report of the sub-committee appointed by the Press Council of India, following widespread allegations of paid news after the 2009 general elections: The fifteenth general elections to the Lok Sabha took place in April-May 2009 and in order to ensure free and fair coverage by the media, the Press Council of India issued guidelines applicable to both government authorities and the press. After the elections , a disturbing trend was highlighted by sections of the media, that is, payment of money by candidates to representatives of media companies for favourable coverage or the phenomenon popularly known as “paid news”. The deception or fraud that such “paid news” entails takes place at three levels. The reader of the publication or the viewer of the television programme is deceived into believing that what is essentially an advertisement is in fact, independently produced news content. By not officially declaring the expenditure incurred on planting “paid news” items

Suggestions by Securities and Exchange Board of India to Press Council of India

On July 15, 2009, Shri S. Ramann, Officer on Special Duty, Integrated Surveillance Department of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) wrote to the Chairman, Press Council of India, Justice G.N. Ray observing that many media companies were entering into agreements called “private treaties” with companies whose equity shares are listed on stock exchanges or companies that were coming out with a public offer of their shares.  The media companies were picking up stakes in such companies and in return, were proving coverage through advertisements, news reports and editorials. The SEBI, which has been set up under the Securities and Exchange Board of India Act, 1992, and is mandated to protect the interests of investors, felt that such promotional and brand building strategies in exchange for shares, “may give rise to conflict of interest and may, therefore, result in dilution of the independence of (the) press vis-à-vis the nature and content of the news/edi

The new age of crony capitalism

Political connections have made many people hugely rich in recent years. But crony capitalism may be waning Mar 15th 2014 AS THE regime of Viktor Yanukovych collapsed in Ukraine, protesters against it could be found outside One Hyde Park, a luxury development in west London. Their target was Rinat Akhmetov, Ukraine’s richest man and a backer of the old regime. “Discipline your pet”, they chanted. Ukraine’s troubled state has long been dominated by its oligarchs. But across the emerging world the relationship between politics and business has become fraught. India’s election in April and May will in part be a plebiscite on a decade of crony capitalism. Turkey’s prime minister is engulfed by scandals involving construction firms—millions of Turks have clicked on YouTube recordings that purport to incriminate him. On March 5th China’s president, Xi Jinping, vowed to act “without mercy” against corruption in an effort to placate public anger. Last year 182,000 officials

Media overreacts to Kejriwal’s criticism coz of structural compulsion to lie

Note:Media is over reacting because there is a "structural compulsion for them to lie." There is camera evidence that when Arvind Kejriwal threatened media persons indulging in embedded journalism at the fundraiser in Nagpur, those who were attending paying Rs 10,000/plate applauded. Journalists are cog in the wheel. The jail is a threat for the business enterprise which are using journalists like mercenaries to shoot their rivals.  Gopal Krishna  Why over-react to Kejriwal's criticism, ask journalists Eminent journalists on Saturday questioned the media reaction to criticism by the Aam Aadmi Party leader Arvind Kejriwal. Of the view that the media should be open to criticism that is “legitimate and long overdue,” Chairman of Kasturi & Sons Ltd. and publisher of The Hindu N. Ram said: “the hype and overreaction makes us look like a laughing stock.” He was speaking at a panel discussion on ‘The State of the Media Today’ after the release of journalist Sa

Murdoch flexes his muscles

Murdoch’s newspapers go ballistic against PM Kevin Rudd ahead of the Australian elections, writes MAYA RANGANATHAN Posted/Updated Saturday, Aug 10 13:00:08, 2013 Much like the Mumbai restaurateur Srinivas Shetty, who chose to register his protest against tax on the bill he gave his customers, a co-owner of a cafe´ ‘Slightly Twisted Refreshments’, in the northern Brisbane suburb of Nundah in Queensland, has posted a sign in the cafe´ that has gone viral on social media. In the week that was, when the Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd set the date of elections as September 7, a hotly-debated issue on and offline has been the headlines in the front page of Rupert Murdoch-owned News Corporation’s Daily Telegraph published in Sydney. On the opening day of the election campaign it screamed ‘Kick this Mob Out’. On Aug 8, the front page depicted Rudd, Deputy Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and Craig Thomson as characters from the 1960s era TV show, H

Vodafone accused of secretly sharing data with British spy agency

Note: The Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB), Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance, Government of India is a body that offers a single window clearance for proposals on Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in India that are not allowed access through the automatic route.  Notably, P Chidambaram was the Minister of Finance from 22 May 2004 to 30 November 2008 Pranab Mukherjee was the Minister of Finance from 24 January 2009 to 26 June 2012 P Chidambaram who was Minister of Home Affairs from 30 November 2008 to 31 July 2012 joined the office of the Minister of Finance on 31 July 2012 and currently hold the office.    FIPB comprises of Secretaries drawn from different ministries with Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, MoF in the chair.  Dr. Arvind Mayaram is currently Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance. FIPB is an inter-ministerial body that examines and discusses proposals for foreign investments in the country