The 71st AAA with veteran journalist Sandeep Bhushan was a telling account of the evolution of news media in India. Through a hard, unbiased look into his own profession, he recounted the genesis and stranglehold of state-owned Doordarshan to the influx of private news agencies in the post liberalisation era.
His book “The Indian Newsroom” is about journalism encapsuled between two covers. In conversation with Ratnottama Sengupta, Arts Editor, The Times of India, the author touched some very contemporary trend in journalism like the death of field-based reportage; marginalisation of reporters; access journalism and its adversities; stardom of anchors; how technology established the dominion of studio-game. “Investigative Journalism is out of the window now,” he lamented. Access journalism that primarily engages snuggling up to the rich and the influential is harming the profession and ethics.
English-language news has a particularly interesting traction here, both because of its disproportionate inﬂuence on the national conversation and its proximity to power. Sandeep Bhushan, who is associated with country’s pioneering news channels like TVI, NDTV, Headlines Today and Hindu, for more than 20 years, marked the desensitization in news emission with sheer excellence.
Young crowd from the audience corner particularly pointed out the trend of propagating fake news. Mr Sundeep Bhutoria also mentioned about the recent fake video footage of Bihar floods that went viral on social media to denigrate the Nitish Kumar government by Opposition.