We all read newspapers, heck I’ve been reading it from when I was in school(only the sports and entertainment section then), but after I started reading it completely I realized from fiasco to fiasco that the newspaper is just a saga which has been in existence from more than a century. Here is how I describe it, rather putting it explicitly:
Okay, front page, news about someone conning the government and running off with huge sums of money. I think it’s safe to assume that monitory problems that deal with scams are now just passé. Then there’s always our beloved politics to entertain us. A politician in a scam, another politician makes remarks about someone else, and then there are those who are just doing their usual so-called public service; they are in the news because of their lapse of service. Fine, nothing we can do about it anyway. So, apart from that there’s always news about actors who have done some right or wrong, I mean come on give them a break, they’re humans too. And there’s always national news about some crime, like today about how a drunken lady killed 2 and injured 5 others. I guess women aren’t that far from men now a days, they seem to be catching up on the latest trends. And page 2 is just a continuation of page 1, which is pretty boring.
Page 3 gives me information about some of the most heinous crimes committed, which is just a small fraction of the countless crimes committed daily, and the funny part is that all the articles end with ‘the thief/criminal is absconding or the police are investigating the crime/ crime scene etc blah blah’.
Page 4 and 5 just give me some more info on politics, rather local politics. I mean come on, gimme a break; all the names I read sound the same to me, get what I mean? Oh, forgot to mention, that section is also where politicians can crib about each other or cry foul about someone they’re unhappy with or something they are unhappy about. Page 6, don’t really remember, I think it gives me national news I guess, which is mostly sad or bad news. Good things are there too, but somehow there’s never much. More like news about good things and good people I read only when they expire, so much for that. But I guess sometimes it just shows that the good people and good things they do need to be heard of more. There was a politician who recently passed away, his name was Jyoti Basu. From what I read about him, he was probably one of the good guys because of whom our country still retains some of its integrity (or maybe not). I’m happy with such things; in fact reading about people who help my country always gives me happiness, because they’re radical in building a nation with strong walls.
Anyway, after that I quickly hop on to the open-ed page where I get to read articles written by different writers on different topics everyday. It’s valuable information I get for free so I pay attention because they address problems faced by our country and also offer solutions; which I think our political think-tanks need to see. But if they do that, what would happen next wouldn’t be what they want to be. So much for progress. Anyway, after the open-ed page, there’s international information, on the latest attacks, bomb blasts, scientific research, and oh! I almost forgot to mention the beloved actors, how would newspapers flourish without gossip and sensationalism? Then after that it’s business news, which is important in its own way I guess. And last but not the least comes the sports page. Ironically those were the only two pages I would read when I was in school. And the funny part is that one whole page is allotted for cricket, and then if there is really anything important about other sports or sportspersons then it’s there. Apart from that I guess we all know how cricket-crazy India is, which is pitiful because just like cricketers, there are other sportspersons too, and they too deserve the kind of attention cricketers get. I mean that an international level player from any other sport is not even as famous as a district level cricketer. And the funniest part is that cricket is the only game in which a person can actually gain weight while playing.
Newspapers give us pivotal information, but I think that now it has become like this short book of everyday tragedies that we read every day. After reading each day’s paper, I can’t help but think about the many negative things in it. Ask yourself, hypocrite politicians, tragedies, fights, communal division, communal riots, caste and creed differentiation etc, isn’t it about time we find a solution for everything? Well, I guess the answer lies within itself, every bit counts, change yourself. I think the situation has become so bad that now it doesn’t really matter if u break traffic signals or if u drive on the wrong side of the road or don’t just follow rules, but it does really matter when u don’t stand up when the national anthem is sung, it does really matter when u skip the flag hoisting ceremony, it really matters when u don’t respect the people who laid down their lives for us to be able to sleep in peace, it does really matter when u don’t correct people who don’t respect their country. I guess what I’m trying to say is that, for a radical change, we need to work towards it, change doesn’t just happen, people make it happen. Think about it, it’s all inter-related, what we read in the newspapers is about us, about our culture, about our own cities, about our own lives we lead. If we don’t change ourselves, then I guess we’ll still have to read what we’ve been reading for a greater part of our lives. So therefore do your bit, because every bit does count, and I am writing this because I believe that there are many who think alike.