Journalist Rajdeep Sardesai, a TRP hungry anchor otherwise, is often seen talking about media ethics, professionalism and leaves no stone unturned at virtue-signalling. However, his conduct in the pursuit of TRPs has often been labelled as ‘unethical’. His desperate attempt to take a higher moral ground by sounding ‘holier than thou’ proved costly when BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra reminded of his actions in the midst of a tragic event in 2001.
During the Prime Time show on India today on Friday, Congress spokesperson Pawan Khera accused the BJP and the ‘Raja‘ (referring to PM Narendra Modi) of setting the news agenda. He said, “The debate is about the kind of narrative that the Raja wants Rajdeep Sardesai to discuss and you are happily discussing it and so am I…” Pawan then went on an unsolicited, gibberish rant on unemployment, farmer issues, thereby deviating from the topic of the PrimeTime debate.
Sambit Patra refers Pawan Khera as ‘Chamcha’ of Rajdeep Sardesai
Meanwhile, Rajdeep took on the role of legitimising the ‘Congress narrative’ by claiming that the BJP is deviating public discourse from the ‘real issues’ by politicising the death of Sushant Singh Rajput and the ordeal of actress Kangana Ranaut. Both Rajdeep and Pawan spoke in tandem to peddle their narrative, thereby denying the chance to BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra to speak.
An irked Sambit then said, “I don’t need to be a part of this debate.” He further emphasised, “Aap aur aapka chamcha milke baat karein (You and your lackey can only speak now). You don’t need to have a BJP spokesperson.” The comment by Patra stirred up the hornet’s nest as Rajdeep tried hard to disprove his loyalty to the grand-old party.
BJP spokesperson exposes hypocrisy of the ‘ace’ journalist
Taking Rajdeep head-on, Sambit Patra asked, “What is this Raja business? Your Congress spokesperson has said that you are even complicit in this. Did Narendra Modi ask you to do all this? My question to you Mr. Rajdeep Sardesai is that did ‘Raja’ or any member from the BJP call you to conduct an interview with the accused Rhea Chakraborty. You did that because you have an agenda.”
The BJP spokesperson continued, “You did the interview because you have an agenda. Let me tell you what it is. I will not be naming a particular reporter. But, I know what he did on 13th December 2001 (referring to Parliament Attacks). Since you are blaming the media, let me tell you how the TV plays. There was an anchor/an ace reporter who once said in an interview that he was planning to have a gala party on the lawns of Parliament with wine and kebabs… And then the ace reporter said that terrorists had entered into the Parliament building. I asked the guard to close the door as I did not want other journalists to come and shoot it. This was because that anchor wanted TRP for his channel.”
Those who complain about TV channels trying to buy TRPs out of Rhea-Sushant case should be shown the mirror as well,for once they closed all the gates of Parliament to trade TRPs during terror attack ..they even confessed being #Vultures— Sambit Patra (@sambitswaraj) September 11, 2020
I won’t name the ace reporter though!! pic.twitter.com/GJlTFKqclA
Pointing out the hypocrisy, Sambit Patra said, “Today, that anchor cannot complain about TRP. I won’t name him but then he said, ‘We are vultures, vying for blood and flesh. This is what gives us our professional satisfaction. It was a great day that people were dying.” Once the BJP spokesperson showed him the mirror during the Prime Time show, he was rattled and fell short of words completely at the same time.
Rajdeep Sardesai ascertains that journalists are vultures
During an interview in 2018, the ‘ace’ reporter had admitted that when the Parliament was being attacked in 2001, he was ‘excited’ and that journalists are like vultures. Rajdeep Sardesai stated, “It was a great day. We are like vultures. We feed on these moments.”
“Parliament was attacked, it was a great day”: Rajdeep Sardesai pic.twitter.com/ioilBv9gUT— BALA (@erbmjha) December 4, 2018
He went as far as to say that for journalists, ‘terror is exciting’. He then said how the exclusive story of the Parliament attack made the team forget the wine and kababs they were planning to picnic on. What Rajdeep Sardesai told us in the interview was that what made a journalist great was not merely doing his job, but to harbour the mindset that made terror attacks look exciting for the sake of TRPs.