Just Something So That I Can Join
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it possible, we always thought that Brahmins were a rich, fat, arrogant community?”
Many Brahmins and other upper castes expressed online their relief that someone was speaking about their plight, that for once they were not attacked, made fun of, ridiculed. Of course there were also a few hostile e-mails, accusing the author of upper casteism, of anti-Dalits bias.
One would have thought however, that at a time when reservation was the hottest journalistic topic, the media would have seized this story and made it its own. After all, isnt impartial journalism to show both sides of the story?
Dont you think, for instance, that the discovery that all 50 Sulabh Shauchalayas (public toilets) in Delhi are cleaned and looked after by Brahmins — traditionally the task of the lowest of the lowest caste — and that this noble institution was started by a Brahmin, Dr Bindeshwar Pathak, makes a wonderful story, both for the print and electronic media?
That is what I believed, at any rate. So when I discovered that the Art of Living Foundation was conducting workshops for all coolies, irrespective of their religion and caste of the Delhi railway station — and that quite a few of them were Brahmins — I thought I could share this story and the Sulabh Shauchalayas scoop, with a few journalistic acquaintances, who would jump on it with glee. Unfortunately I was very wrong.
Initially, some young journalists were enthusiastic and joined us in our investigation. We expected the story to hit the headlines soon and be taken up by the entire press, hungry for something different than the strike of the medicos, or Arjun Singhs adamant attitude. But nothing happened.
We called them day after day, proposed some more data, but still no story came out. Then one of the young journalists, working for one of the largest media outfits in India told us off the record that the sub-editor, backed by the editor, had killed the story in true journalistic freedom.
The second scenario we encountered was stone silence: the star anchors, bureau chiefs, editors of national English newspapers whom I personally contacted, either did not return my calls or were evasive.
Third scenario: Downright hostility: “Youre a right winger, a pro-BJP-RSS journalist” etc. What does truth and investigative journalism