Bollywood, Cricket and Politics: Does India Breathe Anything Else?

Posted on April 20, 2010 in Society

Ankur Kumar:

It will not be an exaggeration to give the above title for this article focusing on three of the most important activities we Indians engage ourselves either observing them or being a part of them.

When was the last time when you saw a Bollywood cinema, appreciated the work of a Director, watched a trailer of an upcoming movie in a multiplex, or just cursed the production house for making a flop movie? May be it was just few hours before when you had switched off your television or computer doing that. Which Cricket tournament was the one you last followed and had lost a bet with your friend for a player not performing as predicted? It could be an ongoing bet as you read this article with the result yet to come! And last but certainly not the least, you would have definitely not missed reading about politics or watching an Indian politician giving an explanation over a controversy.

Indians breathe in every day with these areas of profession giving us a reason to exuberate, gossip, to flaunt our knowledge and to quickly grab attention of the people we are walking along with. No doubt, Bollywood, cricket and politics are the binding factors for the people of our nation. We rejoice in a festive mood and extend our full support when our team wins, a Bollywood blockbuster touches our hearts or a political party claims to achieve something great, but is not this binding at the cost of negligence of other important areas we should give heed to?

Looking on the other side of the picture, we leave out issues like poverty, population, unemployment, corruption and terrorism from our daily scope of discussion. Happenings like SHOAINA’s Wedding, IPL controversies, Bollywood gossips of film stars, and a party’s stand on an issue attracts our attention and make us talk, think, debate and stereotype people associated with these professions. Reason being the far deserving attention given to them by our media. You might be aware of the auction amount of IPL franchises but you might not be aware of the misery our country is facing at a macroscopic level. Its only when we think, discuss, spread our constructive ideas, do something productive about the important issues of reducing poverty, unemployment etc. that we can contribute in gigantic efforts required in eliminating them. It becomes an important responsibility of the youth of our nation to give due importance to obstacles in the growth of our country. At the present rate of development, the vision 2020 seems to remain just a dream than a possible accomplishment.

The writer is a Goa based correspondent of Youth Ki Awaaz and also a student at BITS, Pilani — Goa Campus

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Manil

I agree the root cause of this problem lies in the hype created by the media.Indian Media has shifted it’s focus completely from giving the right & relevant facts to giving the HOT News that can be sold easily in the Indian society & this is happening because of increasing competition among the News Agencies.
So where lies the solution !

Ankur Kumar

Solution lies in a revolution which needs to be brought in the Indian media. Unifying people on larger and more important issues, creating awareness amongst the masses through their enriching programs/articles are some of the good things which media can engage itself more frequently than a casual affair. This can be aimed at faster development and speedy growth of our nation in all areas and will also add to the efforts of both government and private partners involved in public welfare. Why can’t the media makes it a point that it broadcasts programs highlighting NGOs and rural bodies more often than crappy news related to Bollywood, Cricket and Politics the whole day? Our media both in print and electronic form has a massive effect in this country having a population of over a billion.

Atul Sandur

Firstly, its not only the Indian media. The work of the paparazzi in US is not hidden from anybodys view. Anyways, I think the problem lies not with the media, but it is more to do with the people in this society. Media shows what the people want to see. Dont forget media houses are all businesses whose primary motive is to make money. So once the people give thumbs up to viewing programs/articles on such issues, in no time would the media give such matters the prominence they deserve.
But one should also remember that media is a source of entertainment for the people. Given their mundane, boring and hectic lives, people hardly find time to think about anything outside work. Here the media becomes an easy and accessible source of entertainment/pleasure, what with news about the hottest sports star getting married, one of the most charismatic yet inexperienced man in Indian politics taking a beating and some larger-than-life personalities getting involved in scandals. So it provides a medium for people to live the life they never would get a chance to experience. People get to see events in other people’s lives, which they know would never occur in their own lifetime.
Hence, why shouldn’t one look at other innovative techniques/methods to propagate thoughts on issues like poverty, education, etc. Why should one sit and blame the media for not doing what it is supposed to do? Why cant one come up with creative ways to reach out to the public and let them know about issues that need to be addressed immediately. A moments thought in this direction is certainly going to go a long way in preventing people from sitting and cribbing about media not doing its job.

Ankur Kumar

Thanks Atul for your comments and for presenting a detailed view over this topic!

Well to be honest, I differ from your point of view about the media. Think again about the three professions talked about in this article – Bollywood, Cricket and Politics. What is one common thing you find associated with all of them? It is an immense glamour linked with these areas which people in our country die for and our media craves to prepare news showcasing this very glamour, which serves as an easy catch for people specially the youth.

Every private organization or Industry has some sort of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) which it should strive to fulfill. Same is the case with media. Media is forgetting its CSR day by day. Why so much of biasing in presenting events happening across the country. Why not importance is given to programs based on social uplift when it is most required for nation’s true development. Is it just that we should be so self-centered that we think only about our refreshment and entertainment all the time ? Entertainment and refreshment is important but at the same time the motivation to be a social asset has to be instilled in an individual.

“….Hence, why shouldn’t one look at other innovative techniques/methods to propagate thoughts on issues like poverty, education, etc…”

With respect to the above point, I would say, there are ample programs being run and there are organizations working for such causes, but they don’t come in lime light because of poor attention given to them. These organizations can not afford to spend enormous amount of money for advertisements in media. What can they do to be more recognized? Govt. can only ensure that they get enough financial aids for their sustainability. Their awareness and publicity is inevitably required if we are dreaming about becoming a developed nation in a decade. Because the change for achieving such a landmark has to be brought in at the grassroots level, i.e. strengthen our rural base, eliminate unemployment and poverty. The NGOs associated with such noble causes need to be given importance and recognition for their philanthropic deeds.

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