India Insight

Journalist Sardesai sours on Twitter: “Had hoped to interact; failed.”

(The following post contains some essential Hindi translation help from my colleagues Arnika Thakur, Suraj Balakrishnan and Havovi Cooper. Any remaining errors or lack of precision are my fault as I reviewed and participated in all translations. Additionally, any opinions here are those of the author, and not necessarily those of Thomson Reuters Corp.)

From the desk of Rajdeep Sardesai, editor in chief of Indian news network IBN Live (I stitched these sentences together from his Twitter account):

My timeline suggests little space for healthy debate/discussion on twitter. So will no longer raise any political issues on the medium. Will continue writing/talking on issues of natl interest in print/tv, but not on twitter. Will continue to write in print/speak on tv. But will no longer seek twitter as a medium for public debate. Had hoped to interact; failed. A journalist has only his integrity/credibility. That has been abused on this medium for too long by unknown people. Time to switch off.

Or: I’ve had it with you awful people. You are intolerable and I don’t have to tolerate your abuse.


I can’t determine whether Sardesai plans to leave Twitter or whether he is going to save just his political coverage and thoughts for the papers and for television. I also don’t know which comments or which Twitter users led him to this decision, though I have asked him these questions.

Media in India: fine line between regulation and freedom

(Any opinions expressed here are those of the author, and not necessarily those of Thomson Reuters)

If you are a journalist in India or have been around people who work in the field, you might have heard these comments:

“You are a journalist, can’t you get passes arranged for that concert?”, “Can I get a similar Press Card like yours?”, “It is easy to show your Press Card and tell the police you are a journalist when you are charged for a minor offence”, “Don’t you know I am from the media?”, “A PRESS sticker on the car can do wonders”.

Woman attacked in Assam: what should the press have done?

On the night of July 9, a group of about 20 men groped and stripped a teenaged girl attending a birthday party at a pub in Guwahati.

A local news channel, News Live, whose studio is nearby, recorded the incident and broadcast it. The video went viral on the Internet after the channel posted it on YouTube, shocking the nation. (The original video has been removed from You Tube)

The mob molested the girl for more than 30 minutes until passersby and police rescued her. One of them was a journalist, Mukul Kalita, editor of Assamese-language daily Ajir Asom.

XXX domain poses headache for Indian regulators

By Neha Arha

People use computers at an internet cafe in Taiyuan, Shanxi province in China November 13, 2009. REUTERS/Stringer/FilesIndia is proposing to block .xxx-registered websites after a global agency governing the web approved the suffix for pornography websites last week, risking confrontation between a fast-liberalising youth and strong traditionalist values.

The government’s move followed a decade-long dialogue within the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) that resulted in the approval for .xxx suffix for pornography websites. Sales of .xxx domains should begin soon in Q2 2011.

Taking a cue from .com, .org, .nic and others, the creation of .xxx would identify adult content and services and could be used by governments for mass censorship of adult content.

War homes scandal rocks Mumbai ahead of Obama trip

High-rise buildings are seen behind a slum in Mumbai April 28, 2009. REUTERS/Arko Datta/Files
Corruption charges are swirling over a new apartment block in an upscale Mumbai district where homes meant for war widows have gone cheaply to politicians and military officers, embarrassing India’s ruling Congress party.

The scandal has broken out days before U.S. President Barack Obama arrives in the city.

When first mooted, Adarsh Housing Society in Mumbai’s tony Colaba area was supposed to be a six-storey building to house widows and heroes of a military conflict in Kargil bordering Pakistan in 1999.

The media and paid news: Who shall guard the guardians?

INDIA-MEDIA/The media watches everyone but itself, commented an argumentative friend the other day.

How many ‘sting operations’ has the media done on any of its own, say on the ‘Paid News’ controversy?

I was at a loss.

The morality of sting operations is a debatable topic but the larger point demanded a response.