Hard Knocks: No superstitions please!

14 Oct,2011

By Anil Thakraney

 

The Times of India Mumbai’s colourful supplement, Bombay Times, is not something you read. At least I don’t. It’s a fun thingy one usually glances through. Especially with all the, er, oomph on display.

 

However, cricket commentator Harsha Bhogle noticed something extraordinary in their issued dated October 12, and immediately tweeted about it. (Harsha engrossed in BT? Hmmm.) The paper reports on its cover that Amitabh Bachchan’s still-to-be-born grandchild is likely to be a boy. And this stunning forecast was given to them by a numerologist called Sanjay Jumaani. Harsha tweeted this: “i do hopebombaytimes realise they are promoting blind faith and irrationality by putting “numerologists” on their front page.”

 

He is absolutely right, of course. And this is something newspapers should be very careful about. Already some of the vernacular news channels are super busy propagating myths about snake women, angry demons and other frightening creatures… in their lust for TRPs… and the last thing we want is the English press to be doing ditto. Not only will such an article result in a longer queue outside Mr Jumaani’s door, it will have more parents rushing to fake babas and other charlatans to predict the sex of their unborn child. In fact, these crystal ball gazers will become a threat to the livelihood of illegal gender test clinics!

 

Guess it was an editorial error of judgment on the part of Bombay Times. Whether they admit to it or not. But it must serve as a pointer to the rest of us in the media. One of our jobs is to move the nation forward by creating awareness and carrying out sharp analysis. And not to set it back into the dark ages by promoting superstitions. The vernacular channels are already doing a fine job of it. Let’s leave it to them.

PS: Chanced upon this outstanding international Coke ad. This is the sort of work they should be doing inIndia. And not that ridiculous ‘Brrrr’ stuff.
[youtube width=”500″ height=”300″]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dHOzw5KSlE[/youtube]

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One response to “Hard Knocks: No superstitions please!”

  1. Shilpa Raheja says:

    I totally agree! Im not so sure its an editorial error cos its been a while since BT has been publishing a load of crap as well… The headlines and the front page news itself makes one wonder what kind of news these guys are printing. For that matter even TOI healdines and front page often make me wonder ke what the hell are these guys upto?

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