So, the US is reviewing its decision to deny Modi any kind of visa. Buckling under pressure or a very clever game, perhaps? Whatever it is, the issue has snowballed into a matter of national pride with (disappointingly) the PM taking it up in Parliament and asking the US to reconsider. Modi on the other hand has successfully managed to turn the tables. He asks what right the US has to deny him a visa. He ponders (rather loudly) how they would feel if India denied a visa to someone from the US govt. Me thinks if India knew of a person accused of mass murder was coming into the country, I’m sure even we would have not granted him a visa. Why is the M man special? But I am only part of the aam junta – surely can’t argue with his logic or thinking.
The case against Modi deserves a rude awakening – the kind that it got yesterday. Not only should the US stick to its guns and deny him a visa this time, but they should put pressure on the Indian goverment to take legal action, if not political against the man. The “Wanted” posters from the Coalition against Genocide group touch a chord. I sometimes wish we had a system of justice like the Saudi’s have. Cruel. Barbaric. Instant.
A whole new battle is now raging on the subject of investigative “journalism” – the term given to defend sneaking hidden cameras into celebrities bedrooms after setting them up for months. I admit that initially when I heard about the Shakti Kapoor and Aman Verma incidents and saw the Verma tape on telly, I was outraged. How dare they make promises for sex, I thought with anger. And then I thought, these are two adults. Apparently consenting. It didn’t appear as if the girl in question was being forced to do something she didn’t want to. If the undercover reporter could afford to take a flight out of the city, she could have told Verma to get lost when he asked her to meet her at his house late in the evening. I can understand if someone is desperate enough for money or to make a living and is prepared to go to such lengths. It wasn’t the case here. And for someone who is willing to exchange a night in return for the possibility of work and fame, it shouldn’t be anybody else’s business as to what they do.
The Big Fight on NDTV tonight threw up some interesting questions : Mahesh Bhatt said switch your telly off if you don’t want to watch something. Which is allright to some extent especially when he defends ‘Murder’ with the line that he didn’t force people to watch it – they paid for their tickets and made it run for so many weeks. Point taken. We watch what we want to. But is it in the national interest to know that a telly actor or a creepy villian takes sexual favors? Why not focus on, like a lady in the audience said, on the men who distribute drugs to kids outside schools? Or on the politicians who buy a Merc with tax payers money when the state is in the red? Or the policeman who is notorious for greasing his palm for work done? Or the doctor, the postal employee, the clerk in Mantralaya who lives to make a profit from other people’s misery? Why not focus on them and improve the quality of our miserable lives rather than run after minor celebrities and invade their privacy? What are the real issues then? Is this journalism or is it just a game for TRP’s?