What is the job of 24*7 news channels?
You will say ‘giving news’. But the question here is ‘what exactly is news?’ what should make it to the headlines? Is the story of the future of almost 1 lakh doctors hanging in lurch, not a newsworthy story? Is it not even big enough to be a little byte in their speed news segments? Is a certain actress shooting for a song in some city more important for the world to be aware of rather than the fact that every night, thousands of MBBS doctors go to sleep, or rather I must say, attempt to get a sleep, wondering what the next day holds for them?
Now, any person with even a fraction of intelligence will say that media must do a story on the fiasco known as NEETPG-2012 but going by the media’s funeral silence, it is not news. I have lost count of how many journalists I tweeted, pleading them to listen to the woes of us doctors, but all my cries and requests for help, fell on deaf ear. Slowly and slowly, the frustration crept in and the tweets became aggressive, but they still were not enough to wake up the giants of television media from deep slumber.
The prominent anchors and journalists of both Hindi and English media meanwhile were busy in sensationalizing triviality, screaming banality and disturbing mentality of viewers. They ran their ‘agenda’ at ‘primetime’, pandering to politicians and anything else that brings TRP, all the while masquerading as representatives of ‘we the people’ and telling us to ‘face the nation’ but never actually bothering to face the truth themselves. Truth, that the quality of their circus has so depleted owing to their quench for fame that news channels are no longer news channels. People no longer tune in to them to catch up on news; they tune in to get some entertainment.
Back to NEETPG.
So a pan-India torture was being carried out (and is still going strong as on 13th April 2013) but the media was busy sleeping with political tamashas. And yet strangely enough, every neetpg aspirant ended up watching in disbelief as stories with lesser impact donned the 6-10 pm slots, while tales of their mental harassment went unnoticed, unheard. The story of some logjam in nursery admissions made it to primetime, mainly because it was news from Delhi but yet again, for some inexplicable reason, protest by doctors, held at jantar-mantar could just make it to morning news and appeared as filler in their news bulletins. They even wasted a whole day on a useless SRK controversy but none had the strength and the valor to take this issue.
Wait a minute! I am wrong, it is not about courage. The reason these media managers were not interested in this story was simply due to lack of TRP. Yes! TRP! In the end it boils down to simple commerce. The news they sell must be expensive. Who cares about what the words like truth, honesty, transparency etc. etc. stand for? These words are only restricted for their self-promoting adverts or to the end of their sting operations, where they vow to take to the story to its justified conclusion (*cough* *cough* aajtak *cough* op.dhritrashtra*cough* *cough*) and forget about it within a month as some new ‘hot news’ falls into their lap.
Today, the NEETPG case still lies in court. The doctors still curse the system, NBE, MCI, GOI, SC and every other thing under the sun for the pathetic state of affairs. But sadly, there are many who have begun to rue the day they decided that they want to be a doctor. A sense of anger engulfs them and these TRPwhores must remember, that it is quite possible that years from now, when they will be wearing adult diapers and would have stopped dyeing their hairs, the doctors they have neglected today will be at their prime and there is a high chance that they might end up under the treatment of these very same disgruntled clinicians. What goes around always comes around. And they will do well to remember that doctors are known as ‘gods’ on earth, plainly because ‘The buck stops here’.