Even Mainstream Media Plays Up Gossip, Sidelines Issues

Akhil Sharma (MACJ, KC College, Mumbai)

The latest feud between renowned Bollywood actors Kangana Ranaut and Hrithik Roshan is the talk of the town and is given more importance than other real issue. Kangana with her shocking statements against Hrithik is making headlines everyday. The fight started between the two back in 2016 when Kangana called Hrithik her ‘silly ex’, and Hrithik slapped her with a legal notice of defamation and then their private e-mails were publicised. Though, it was reported, they decided to sort out the matter amicably afterwards.

Recently, while Kangana began promoting her upcoming film ‘Simran’, she gave some shocking statements against Hrithik Roshan and his father and filmmaker Rakesh Roshan. She ‘exposed’ every single details of their relationship in public and said she has suffered a lot of mental trauma.

According to her, she exposed the family and the torture she suffered while she was having affair with him. Not just Hrithik she also talked of her affair with actor Aditya Pancholi and how she was a victim of mental and physical abuse. The spat became very ugly with Aditya Pancholi and his wife Zarina Wahab replying to her comments.

The way media has covered the whole issue is very amusing. Kangana has been invited to several shows to give interviews and she is creates controversy everywhere. Media houses are garnering publicity by inviting her for exclusives. In every interview, she has been talking only about her personal life and her failed relationships. Her film and her work has been totally sidelined, but as a matter of fact, this is a great publicity gimmick for her upcoming release. She is constantly in news everyday, and has become an idol for all the girls out there.

Apparently, her bold and fierce interviews have intimidated people so much that her mistakes are totally overshadowed. The media is surely asking questions about Hrithik and Aditya and how she’s a victim, but nobody questioned her for being in an affair with two married men fully aware of their marital status. She is boasting about being a feminist and speaking out for her, but has she forgotten that when she was in an affair with those married men, she wronged their wives? And, that she was equally involved in doing wrong to those women?

The Media, as a platform, which showcases the audiences the happenings and on goings in the country has failed miserably the way they have covered the issue.

AIB, a popular digital platform that takes subtle digs on the atrocities of the system, collaborated with Kangana and made a video where she is seen criticising various issues with Bollywood industry, like nepotism, equal pay, gender discrimination etc. Suddenly she has become the brand ambassador of feminism in India.

The media has become very irresponsible in covering issues nowadays. Instead of covering real issues, they constantly play up Bollywood controversies and make a fool out of the common man. The fact that media needs some gate keeping cannot be denied but it also needs critics who will objectively question the credibility of what they are showing and reporting.

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(This article has been submitted by a Media student as an assignment and is being published verbatim, gratis and in good faith)