“Accuracy in Reporting” – A ‘POLITE KICK’ to ‘TIMES NOW T.V.’!

via H.Balakrishnan published on July 23, 2008

DEAR SIR,

1.  I was viewing the news on air on your Channel this evening (23 Jul 2008) at 1700 hrs IST

2.  One of the items on your ‘Breaking News’ was about the Sethusamudram Ship Channel Project (SSCP), and the Centre’s stand in the Supreme Court today. Your ‘ anchor ‘ repeatedly was telling that the Centre had ONLY MADE AN ORAL STATEMENT AND HAD NOT FILED AN AFFIDAVIT.

3.  May I submit that your Channel was ‘ factually ‘ incorrect in its reporting.

4.  To recap for your convenience!! Initially in 2007, the Ministry of Culture (Ambika Soni) had filed an affidavit in the Madras High Court, that questioned the existence of Lord Ram. It created a furore.This affidavit was withdrawn.

5.  Since there were two petitions in the Supreme Court at the same time, the Centre had requested all petitions be transferred to the Supreme Court. This was done. In Oct 2007, the Ministry of Shipping & Road Transport (T.R. Baalu) had appointed a ‘ Committee of Eminent Persons ‘, headed by the present Vice Chancellor of the Madras University. This Committee held its sittings in Chennai between 29 Oct – 03 Nov 2007. It presented its report to the Govt.of India sometime in Jan/Feb 2008.

6.  On the basis of THIS REPORT, the Ministry of Shipping & Road Transport filed the Centre’s ‘ revised ‘ affidavit in about March 2008. The Supreme Court has since then been hearings on the case. The last hearing was on 08 May 2008, before the Supreme Court closed for its summer vacation.

7.  In the hearings in Apr/May 2008, the petitioners (there are 6 of them), had completed their arguments. Senior Counsel Mr. Fali Nariman, representing the Govt. of India was ONLY replying to the arguments of the petitioners. No more. No less.Thats all, I presume has happened in the Supreme Court today – 23 Jul 2008. The petitioners can intervene to Mr. Fali Nariman’s submissions.The ‘ Last Word ‘ is yet to be told on this case. Where then was a need for any affidavit? Could you please clarify?


May I also submit, there is a need to move away from ‘sensationalising’ every news, as was sought to be done in this case!!


 

Regret inconvenience please.


 

WARM REGARDS


 

H.Balakrishnan

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