How do you listen to an esteemed panel at a national debate televised on one of the most popular news channels in India? You don’t.
If it’s Arnab Goswami moderating the debate then it is essential to strain your ears to catch the panelists speak. And it is really disappointing.
As far as I understand, the sole purpose of media is to inform people.
Even TV anchors of the best and most popular news channels exercise restraint on personal emotions.
Look at any interview on channels like CNN, BBC, or for that matter, an interview by seasoned mediapersons, e.g. Karan Thapar, Prannoy Roy etc, and then compare it to Mr. Goswami’s raucous one-hour debates. You’ll see the difference.
But, let me first accept that I seldom miss News Hour. That is because I like the topics and I like the people who are brought in as panelists.
How I wish Mr. Goswami did not stop the panelists mid-way, whenever they said something that went beyond the script.
I feel Mr. Goswami gets some kind of unexplained kick out of chattering. Maybe this is why he asks the question, doesn’t allow the speaker to answer, assumes an answer himself, asks another question, points out the importance of the debate, identifies the only question the debate is about, laughs at somebody who disagrees with him and repeats everything each night starting 9.00 PM IST on TIMES Now.
If you don’t believe me, then have a look at yesterday’s debate in the news channel’s archives. I am giving the link to the third part of the videos uploaded by the TIMES Now admin.
Search the portal for the link to the previous videos. The debate featured Mr. Rashid Engineer, an independent MLA from Jammu and Kashmir, and many other notable persons. Here is the link : News Hour Debate.
The debate was on whether cinema halls should be brought back to Kashmir. Now, keeping aside what is obvious, an anchor is supposed to allow both sides to speak and then let the viewers decide.
But here is Arnab Goswami who has taken the onus of preserving the nation and helping it progress onto himself.
He did not allow any body speaking against having cinemas in Kashmir put forward their point completely.
In fact, at one point of time, Mr. Engineer said that he had never been to a cinema hall.
Wonder of wonders! Mr. Goswami mocked Mr. Engineer on national television and laughed at him!
He was so unfair to him. How I wanted to hear Mr. Engineer say his side of the story.
I wish Mr. Goswami was not so curt in cutting him in.
Had I been one of the participants, I wouldn’t have hesitated in walking out.
A humorous part of Arnab Goswami’s interviews are the frequent mentions of the ‘only question that needs to be answered today’ or ‘the question tonight is’.
Every time Mr. Goswami says this in his debate (and he says it at least thrice) he comes up with a new question.
This, I feel, is because he is predetermined in taking a debate to a pre-defined conclusion.
And we do not expect him to do so.
And what I don’t understand is his fanatic desire to assume the role of a nationalist, even while he is playing the role of a journalist.
We don’t need nationalists for TV anchors, Mr. Goswami.
I, as a viewer, am not interested in hearing you speak.News Hour debate on Times Now
I watch The Newshour daily. However, I don’t watch it for knowing about Mr. Goswami’s views, but for listening to the medley of people who are invited to speak. The people who move and shake this country.
However, you have to admire the resourcefulness of the network.
I know that Times Now is a very popular network and everyone I know watches it. This is because they get the best to speak on a topic.
But what good is the availability of speakers when you don’t allow them to speak out their mind and make their stand clear and defend their stand?
Mr. Goswami is too aggressive with the panelists.
And I am sure there are many who feel this way.
There is no need to be partisan in a debate.
Let the viewers listen to both the sides and then decide for themselves.
I think he believes in taking part in the debate himself and giving the boot to his duty as a ‘moderator’.
I would like to see a far more mature approach to moderation.
I don’t dispute the fact that Arnab Goswami is a good speaker and he has the required qualifications and merits to be a news anchor.
But, in the role of a moderator I want him to be less interfering and stick to the role he is assumed to be playing.
I want a journalist or a moderator to be impartial when he throws a question to a leader from Pakistan or from Kashmir or from BJP or from Congress.
Let the questions be sharp, but for God’s sake, let the speaker say what he wants to say, even if you don’t agree to what he says.
And please don’t try to pin down a speaker when he says something that you don’t want to listen.
Don’t conduct a judicial enquiry on TV, please!.
The viewers will know when a panelist’s his argument is not valid.
The viewers want to listen to what a panelist wants to say.
I want to listen to speakers of both sides.
Stop bossing around on national television! Let others speak too!
Mr. Goswami, I respect your nationalism, emotional inclinations and personal views.
But, I watch News Hour to learn about the panelists’ views.
I want to hear the whole story, the whole raw debate.
Not just a well-directed debate.