Media: Pakistan vs India
IN his recent interview to India’s Outlook magazine (Nov 1), Noam Chomsky, after having spent three weeks in India and a week in Pakistan, has compared the English language media between the two countries. Noam Chomsky, an American linguist, philosopher, cognitive scientist, and political activist, found the media in Pakistan more open, free and vibrant than that in India.
“In Pakistan, I read the English language media, which go to a tiny part of the population”, said Mr Chomsky and went on: “Apparently, the government, no matter how repressive it is, is willing to say to them that you have your fun we are not going to bother you. So they don’t interfere with it.”
Turning towards India’s media, Mr Chomsky said: “The media in India is free, the government doesn’t have the power to control it. But what I saw was that it was pretty restricted, very narrow and provincial and not very informative, leaving out lots of things.”
In the same issue of the Outlook magazine, Paranjoy Guha Thakurta, a columnist, wrtiting under the heading Cut-Rate Democracy, has this to write: “In recent times, however, corruption in the Indian media has gone way beyond individuals and specific media organisations — from ‘planting’ information and spinning views in lieu of favours received in cash or kind — to institutionalised and organised forms of corruption wherein newspapers and TV channels receive funds for publishing or broadcasting information that is sought to be disguised as ‘news’ — but are actually designed to favour particular individuals, corporate entities, representative of political parties or cash-rich candidates contesting elections.”
They say the media is the watchdog of democracy!
M. NAUMAN KHAN