Journalism is a competitive profession. The competition is in the sphere of reporting, stories and scoops. The competition is in being enterprising, in courage and these are the ‘jewels’ in the profession of journalism, because it is on the basis of these qualities that an editor reviews the work of his colleagues or those who work with him or her. But today one is getting to see a different picture. In the sacrosanct profession of journalism such people have entered, who, if we call them agents or brokers would not be an exaggeration. Such journalists take pride in working for various political parties and the Government for their own personal aggrandisement and vested interests; instead of writing a good report they think it is more worthwhile to do ‘PR journalism’.
There is also one lot of journalists who wish to join the category of agents or brokers without being asked, and their method is interesting. For them, writing news based entirely on untruths has become a hobby. The trend or ‘fashion’ of writing anonymously in chit-chat or gossip (‘Gup-Shup’) columns and then showing what has been written to those in power or to political parties in the expectation that they should pay a price for it, even if it is small, is on the rise. Even very good editors find themselves helpless before such ‘great’ associates. This is regrettable also because not only do such journalists shamelessly prove that wrong is right, but are seen to be taking ‘supari’ (betel-nut) to create an environment against honest and fearless journalists. Actually, they have no purpose or principles of their own, but they think they can show-off by spoiling the image of those who do have a purpose or principles.
In fact, such journalists take money from the Intelligence Bureau, take money from the ISI, take money from Mossad, and take money from certain political parties as well. They can be seen even at odd hours at the houses of political leaders, they can be seen at the parties thrown by arms dealers and brokers, and can be seen in the late evenings drinking liquor in the homes of politicians, where they seem to appear to be like ‘chief conspirators’. It is a matter of regret that despite anger amongst their colleagues, no step can be taken against them, because there are some editors who do not get to know what is being printed or published, and there are also some editors who use such press correspondents for their own self fulfillment, to further their own interests.
A ‘talked about’ editor is being hounded by the intelligence agencies, the Government and political parties. They want to destroy and ‘finish’ the credibility of this editor. Perhaps the Finance Minister, P. Chidambaram and the Home Minister, Sushil Kumar Shinde, are themselves involved in this game, because without their consent, such a large criminal conspiracy cannot take place against the much talked about editor. I know that both these Ministers will remain silent, because they are not bothered about their own honour and prestige, nor of the honour and prestige of credible journalists.
The category of such journalists or some journalists who have included themselves in this category, after writing something against Anna Hazare or General V.K. Singh on the basis of false evidence, pat themselves on the back before the forces who have got the writing done on the basis of falsehoods. There are also some who cannot face or stand up before journalists of integrity, but make many nameless comments or commentaries against them and with shameless laughter, tom-tom their attendance in the ‘durbar’ (court) of politicians and take money separately from the Intelligence Bureau, ISI and Mossad. These journalists advise the Intelligence Bureau and Mossad on how the people raising their voices for honesty and probity can be broken or how they can be made to fight with each other. It is worth mentioning that use of such journalists is made by the Intelligence Bureau and Mossad to throw mud on journalists who have credibility.
Intelligence agencies, especially Mossad and the ISI, shower gifts on the homes of such journalists and in return for the gifts these journalists provide information about where a journalist with credibility is going, what kind of reporting is being done and how the credibility of a good report can be ‘ended’. Not just this, such journalists supply information to national intelligence agencies as well as foreign intelligence agencies about the social relationships of credible journalists so that intelligence agencies can easily make schemes to assassinate the character of credible journalists. In their attempt at character assassination, intelligence agencies open fake accounts, put money in those accounts, get false foreign residence permit papers made and scheme to prepare a fake sex CD. I know an editor on whose ‘behalf’ somebody applied for a residence permit in Hong Kong. This means he can open an account in Hong Kong and money can be put in that account. In the name of this editor a fake account was opened with Standard Chartered Bank and money was also put in it. Not only that, ATM operations also started in the name of the editor. The editor was astounded and very disturbed : what on earth was happening ? He became alarmed and a bit frightened and wrote an e-mail to the Hong Kong authorities and also to Standard Chartered Bank that someone was providing false and wrong information on his ‘behalf’ or opening a fake account.
This is that ‘talked about’ editor who is being hounded by the intelligence agencies, the Government and political parties. They want to destroy and ‘finish’ the credibility of this editor. Perhaps the Finance Minister, P. Chidambaram and the Home Minister, Sushil Kumar Shinde, are themselves involved in this game, because without their consent, such a large criminal conspiracy cannot take place against the much talked about editor. I know that both these Ministers will remain silent, because they are not bothered about their own honour and prestige, nor of the honour and prestige of credible journalists.
I can say that one category of journalists, which is a very small number, is indulging in ‘dalali’ (‘paid agentship’) today, but there is also another category of journalists which is outside the ‘dalali chakravyuh’(paid agentship maze or trap) and fulfilling its duties with honesty and integrity. The first category is organised, but the second category is unorganised. The journalists of the second category try to bring forward and focus on stories about the situation of the country, the problems and pain of the people, inflation, the sufferings of the people due to corruption and perhaps it is these journalists who are keeping afloat an atmosphere of hope and faith in the country. When the common man – the ‘aam aadmi’– in the country loses from all sides, then, as a last ditch attempt, he goes to a journalist. Journalists belonging to the first category make a deal even out of the pain of the affected people, but the second category of journalists devote their hearts and soul and their very lives to bring forward and highlight the causes for the problems and suffering of the people.
Prabhash Joshi was an ideal of the second kind of journalists. People remember him even today because he always sided with the truth. It can be hoped from those journalists who remember Prabhash Joshi and hold him as their ‘ideal’ that they will always raise their hands in favour of the truth in the same way that Prabhash Joshi always did.