Hafta letters: Canada, Kashmir and internal biases

NL subscribers get back with bouquets and brickbats!

WrittenBy:NL Team
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Hi there! I am a long-time subscriber, and now really super pissed with your app… The main reason I subscribe to you is to keep journalism free of influence, and your podcasts…what is the point if I can’t even resume my podcast. Every time I pause the podcast your app restarts and I have to manually find the right time stamp…I have asked many times for the RSS link to listen to your podcast with external podcast players but you don’t give it to normal subscribers. Come on, the least you can do is fix your podcast player, it does not take a genius to fix an app. Your app player is simply the worst and I have been tolerating this for more than a year…Please fix this or provide me with an alternative.

Karthik

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Good work! Keep it up. My thoughts on the Women’s Reservation Bill: For every three MP regions, create a separate Women MP (let BJP name the post nicely). She will be in Parliament, and get 33 percent of the speaking time allocated on any discussion and should have a higher cadre compared to the protocol for the MPs in those three MP regions. This doesn’t need any census or anything at all and always guarantees a woman MP and also gives her a voice in Parliament.

Sarath

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Recently, Rohit Mishra posted a video which mentioned that IAC was planned and executed by RSS. What’s your reaction to that? And do you feel that you are partly responsible for putting BJP in the position to oppress everyone?

Geetika

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Regarding the discussion on Shastri’s question to Siraj in Hafta 451, I think it is an overreaction to call it problematic, etc. Context also is that during every IPL season, Siraj invites his RCB teammates at his home to serve them biryani. Siraj’s career blossomed when Shastri was the coach and he has been a huge supporter of Siraj. I understand there is anti-Muslim sentiments in this country, but I still feel it is just a light-hearted comment to someone who loves biryani rather than comparing it with someone casually using the N-word.

Sruthi

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Niku uncle needs to relax on the Raavan burning thing. We saw people being killed in movies etc. Live Ramleela with Ravan effigy burning at the end is nothing more than entertainment. Sena for NDTV and FTW.

Inder

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I have wanted to write a letter to Hafta for a few weeks now, but I will choose not to write any of my older thoughts on Chandrayaan or the “one India, one election” debate; being an Indian in Canada, this week’s development of the chaos does take precedence. 

To start on a lighter note, I am sure someone heard about Abhinandan’s thoughts on Maple syrup and informed Trudeau to target India for demeaning and insulting a national treasure and symbol, and play the Indian game for international opinions on domestic issues.

Jokes aside, there are multi-layered scenarios that led us here; G20 statement, cost of living crisis in Canada, murder investigation of Nijjar, and Indian response to allegations. It is hard to overlook the internal politics of Canada and the role that it might be playing in the Canadian government’s approach, but it is also quite alarming to see the reaction of the Indian side. It’s like diplomacy is being run by kids with no sense of managing the situation, but instead running a show business. I haven’t seen any coverage by Indian media but I hardly think there is any point doing that. I look forward to Hafta and Charcha this week.

If you people get a chance, I would suggest you take a look at thoughts presented by CBC News on this issue, especially during the “At Issue” segment on Thursday night. There seems to be some media investigation that was going to come out and Trudeau may have just preempted that news instead.

Regards,

Thanks for all the work that you do!

Anonymous

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Hi team,

Getting straight to the point, what is going on in Kashmir? Due to the recent incidents, I looked up articles on Kashmir and opinion is varying widely. Some say that these are the last incidents of dying terrorism, some others, like Dulat, are saying that there is now hybrid terrorism in Kashmir. Of course, there have always been contradictory opinions about Kashmir but this is at another level. Also, despite all the nationalistic hoohaa, I do not see a lot of coverage of the recent “spike in terrorism” (I am quoting Dulat here again). I know that reporting from Kashmir can be resource consuming for NL so I have some alternate suggestions.

1. Could you please share your opinion on Dulat’s interview with Karan Thappar? Or even better, could someone interview him as Mr Thappar is very annoying with his interruptions. I thought Madhu did a fabulous job with Dulat last time and I am sure NL can do it again!

2. Abhinandan could use his Army connections to get us an idea about the current situation.

3. Could we please get Mehraj to share his opinion on this issue?

Keep up the good work, really jealous that you guys got to see “While We Watched” :)

Best,

Goonj Mohan

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Hello from a long-time listener and subscriber. I have been a part of the NL journey from the time the Hafta team comprised Madhu, Abhinandan, Anand R, Manisha and Aurnab. You guys have been doing a great job. I have been meaning to write about this topic since a while but lately I have learned to wait for a few weeks to allow my opinions and thoughts to shape up since the first occurrence.

I am aware that Hafta is just a casual discussion and people freely outspeak their minds. But lately it has been observed that it has just become like a personal venting and ranting platform for a few. 

Abhinandan would insert Modi, RSS, Ram, gomutra, Hindutva taunts in almost all topics. I and many others have been listening and following work since the last decade, so we know your intention and context but it can be very off-putting for new listeners. However, it will be good content for people with a certain ideology where they hate anything even slightly related to Modi. That’s the model portals like Caravan and The Wire follow. I wouldn’t want NL to go down that path. Throughout the entire last year, I never had a single podcast that I could gift to my friends.

So, here are the few suggestions (read “please” before all the sentences):

-  Build credibility by sound neutral to your audience

-  In podcasts, while you engage with other panellists, think that you are also engaging with your listeners.

-  Phrase your opinion in such a way that you don’t sound like you’re ranting, rather explain with examples of what it would be like if similar situations happened on the other side.

- STOP making sly comments on religious symbols and stop showing saffron, tilak and trishul to describe your subject in a negative way in your video thumbnails.

-  Watch and listen to Saurabh Dwivedi to learn how to construct your opinion to sound credible when you criticise the people in power

- Do not pick up topics from Twitter (X) trends for podcast discussion

- Don’t brand anyone with BJP-leaning as a bad person. Your video on BeerBiceps didn’t go down very well with many. It was unnecessary. He is a young content creator who curates his content for more views. That’s it. I saw many of his videos after you introduced him to me. No, he is not a bigot. I wouldn’t want NL resources to go for vanity projects like that episode of yours.

Please note that this strongly-worded email is coming with the right intentions. NL’s growth lies on a larger audience and that only comes from building a brand that does not appear like it's leaning one way or another.

Keep up the good work. Forever supporter of the NL news model.

(PS, NL production team has nailed the lighting in Manisha’s interview with Neerja Chaudhary, great work)

Kind Regards,

Bhavesh Bhatt

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