If your only source of news is mainstream English and Hindi television news channels, you wouldn’t be blamed for believing that the only thing of importance happening in the nation today is five Rafale fighter jets making a safe landing. This is also possibly the first time in the history of global news that a plane taking off and landing became an occasion for breathless, ball-by-ball commentary.
From NDTV to Zee News to Republic TV to India Today to ABP News, all major channels for about a day now have been telling us how the glorious planes took off, flew mid air, and finally landed. Some had reporters stationed in Ambala, even if only to show visuals that defence minister Rajnath Singh put out on Twitter. The Indian Air Force prevented any photography or videography around the Air Force station for security purposes. Bummer.
Once the planes landed, ABP News gushed that India’s "bahubali" had landed. Of course, we were also told why China should now be scared of India since they don’t have jets like ours. Some of the ticker headlines we noted were: Aa Gaya Rafale, Golden Arrows Are Here, Aao Bahubali Tumhara Swagat.
The award for the most creative ticker goes to TV9 Bharatvarsh for East or West, Rafale is the best.
And then, there were visuals of Prime Minister Modi taking a dip in holy Ganga. Because why not.
Earlier this week, some news anchors even hopped on board to give us, umm, a feel of what it’s like. We think we could have done without it.
The media must be free and fair, uninfluenced by corporate or state interests. That's why you, the public, need to pay to keep news free. Support independent media by subscribing to Newslaundry today.