Wednesday, June 04, 2014

It is raining disclaimers

It was not too long ago – indeed only on June 1st – the newspaper Hindustan Times put out the reason why it is not publishing a photograph of Mallika Sherawat draped in the tricolor. I had posted on it [1], cynicism oozing.
Today I find in the main section of the same paper another detailed statement that amounts to a disclaimer. The only difference between five days ago and today is the disclaimer had graduated to the main section from the supplement!
Today’s disclaimer pertains to the driver of the government vehicle in which Gopinath Munde was being driven when he met with the fatal accident. The driver, it turns out was not a regular but was an ad-hoc appointee. But, the paper deemed that it should offer some tidbits, fill up the assigned column inches, but at the same time should not be seen to be doing so. Hence the disclaimer. I let you read it in full:
“The name of the said driver is not being disclosed deliberately by HT, nor is this report an attempt to tarnish his individual reputation, question his driving skills or assert his culpability for the late minister’s (sic) death.”
One question before I sign off. Why did the HT not find the same reasons valid enough for the driver of the other car involved in the accident? That would have been one more disclaimer!
Raghuram Ekambaram

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