ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Paranjoy Guha ThakurtaSubscribe to Paranjoy Guha Thakurta

Manufacturing 'News'

The phenomenon of "paid news" wherein newspapers, magazines and TV channels are paid for eulogies of particular candidates and political parties, which then masquerade as independent news, became widespread on the eve of the Lok Sabha and assembly elections of 2009. The Election Commission brought out a circular in 2010 asking the chief electoral officers of all states and union territories to be extra vigilant about this electoral malpractice. Will this be strictly implemented in the forthcoming assembly elections in Assam, Kerala, Puducherry, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal? What kind of media regulatory mechanism should be in place to curb this unethical and illegal practice?

Underbelly of the Great Indian Telecom Revolution

While the phenomenal growth of telecommunications in India is often attributed to deregulation, the other side of the coin is the equally massive spread of crony capitalism based on scams and corrupt practices. These scandals are a consequence of poor regulatory oversight and deliberate manipulation of policies and norms to favour select privately-owned corporate entities. The most brazen of these scandals pertains to the questionable manner in which mobile spectrum was priced and allocated under the former communications minister Andimuthu Raja. This article traces the history of telecom scams in India and explains the nature of the present 2G corruption.

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