It’s that time of the year when our usual suspects turn into marketing agents for the promotion of Vivek Agnihotri’s latest film. While Manipur simmered with tension, and BJP MP Ramesh Bhiduri got “rewarded” for his communal tirade in the Parliament, our primetime TV news anchors were busy promoting The Vaccine War, touted as “India’s first bio-science film”. Interestingly, the news channels promoting the “bio-science film” today had hosted anti-vaxxers, like Baba Ramdev, amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
Hypocrisy aside, Agnihotri exploited his free pass to make any fact-free assertions on TV. From “toolkits” to foreign pharma lobbies “hiring journalists” to sabotage India’s indigenous vaccine programme – we heard every possible outlandish claim.
In other news, our anchors got international fame this week for spreading misinformation. Former Indian diplomat claimed Justin Trudeau’s plane to India was “full of cocaine”. Of course, such “credible rumour” mongering fit the bill, given the debate was hosted by Deepak Chaurasia who sought to understand how Trudeau’s brain works.