Saturday's attack on the office of Tamil biweekly Nakkheeran by AIADMK activists (Jan. 8) is condemnable. At the same time, the title of the write-up on Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa is provocative and smacks of indignity. While it is undeniable that the media act as a check in a democracy, freedom of the press is not their long arm. Napoleon said: “I fear three newspapers more than a hundred thousand bayonets.” Sometimes, sensational writing becomes a bayonet causing self-infliction.
Violence in any form is unacceptable. But the article on the Chief Minister was unwarranted, unhealthy, and in bad taste.
Whether or not a person cooks or/and eats beef, is purely his or her personal lookout. Although one cannot justify the vandalism indulged in by AIADMK activists, journalists should understand that writing about the personal life of public figures with defamatory intent is not investigative journalism.
While the attack on the office of Nakkheeran is highly deplorable, I was shocked to see the ill-worded comments made against the Chief Minister on the basis of her community. Had similar comments been made against a person of any other community, imagine the extent to which passions would have been roused and exploited by vested interests.