New election media strategy? After Tamil channel, PM’s interview with Assam daily

PM Modi spoke about development and security challenges in the Northeast.

WrittenBy:NL Team
The Assam Tribune carried this picture with the interview.

A disruption in the works for the content distribution devised at TV news channels in Noida’s swanky complexes? After all, the PM is yet to give any “exclusive interview” to the big media as his party navigates the 2024 Lok Sabha election campaign.

Speaking to the Assam Tribune at his residence, PM Modi spoke about development in the Northeast, the Chinese threat, communication gap, and security challenges in the region. 

A picture showed the paper’s journalist Ramanuj Dutta Choudhury in conversation with the PM. “NE is India’s greatest success story: Modi,” read the headline. “In the last 10 years, it is visible how we have ended the NE’s isolation and developed it as Bharat’s gateway to the East,” stated the strap below the title, in quotes.

The PM, who faced criticism over his government’s alleged inaction in Manipur, also spoke about the situation in the state in response to a question.

“We believe that it is our collective responsibility to deal with the situation sensitively. I have already spoken about this in the Parliament. We’ve dedicated our best resources and administrative machinery to resolving the conflict. Because of the timely intervention of the Government of India and efforts made by the Government of Manipur, there has been a marked improvement in the situation of the state,” he said.

Notably, the PM had broken his silence on Manipur only after a viral video showing two women being paraded naked by a mob. 

“Home Minister Amit Shah stayed in Manipur while the conflict was at its peak, holding 15-plus meetings with various stakeholders to help resolve the conflict. The Central government has been consistently extending its support, as required by the state government. The process of relief and rehabilitation is ongoing. Remedial measures undertaken include a financial package for the relief and rehabilitation of people living in shelter camps in the state.”

Recently, the PM chose Thanthi TV, a Chennai-based Tamil news channel, for his pre-election interview, with the two interviewers speaking in Tamil while he replied in chaste Hindi. Thanthi TV may not be entirely aligned with the major parties in Tamil Nadu but it set the tone for the BJP’s ambitions. 

Modi got a slow-motion walk-in wearing white silk veshti and shirt. The interviewer exclaimed that he looked “so pretty” and the PM fumbled through a couple of words in Tamil. Thanthi TV, with a heavy hand, led him through ruminations on why he had such “passion” for the state “unlike most of your predecessors”, why he “connects so well” with Tamilians, his favourite Tamil food (upma), and how he made his mother proud.

Read all about it here.


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