Military & Aerospace

Strange priorities of the Indian media
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Issue Vol 23.3 Jul-Sep2008 | Date : 22 Dec , 2010

An extract of the tribute paid by Rajeev Issar to the Late Major Manish Pitambare dated November 28, 2006 and circulated by email

On Tuesday (November 27, 2006), this news swept across all the news channels ‘Sanjay Dutt relieved by court,’ ‘Sirf Munna not a bhai’, ‘13-saal ka vanvaas khatam’ and ‘although found guilty for possession of armory, all the TADA charges against him are withdrawn.’ Then many personalities like Salman Khan said ‘He is a good person. We knew he will come out clean.’ Mr Big B said ‘Dutt’s family and our family have relations for years, he’s a good kid. He is like elder brother to Abhishek’. His sister Priya Dutt said ‘we can sleep well tonight. It’s a great relief.’

In other news, the Parliament was mad at the Indian team for performing badly; Greg Chappell said something; Shah Rukh Khan replaces Amitabh in KBC and other such stuff. But most of the emphasis was on Sanjay Dutt’s ‘phoenix like’ comeback from the ashes of terrorist charges. Surfing through the channels, a news item on BBC startled me. It read ‘Hizbul Mujahideen’s most wanted terrorist Sohel Faisal killed in Anantnag, India. Indian Major leading the operation lost his life in the process. Four others are injured.’

Also read: Public standing of the Indian military

It was past midnight. I started visiting the Indian channels, but Sanjay Dutt was still ruling. They were telling how Sanjay pleaded to the court saying ‘I’m the sole bread earner for my family,’ ‘I have a daughter who is studying in US and so on. Then they showed how Sanjay was not wearing his lucky blue shirt while he was hearing the verdict and also how he went to every temple and prayed for the last few months.

Sure Sanjay Dutt has a daughter; sure he did not do any terrorist activity. Possessing an AK47 is considered too elementary in terrorist community… sure Sanjay Dutt went to all the temples; sure he did a lot of Gandhigiri but then…

Major Manish H Pitambare got the information from his sources about the terrorists’ whereabouts. Wasting no time he attacked the camp, killed Hizbul Mujahideen’s supremo and in the process lost his life to the bullets fired from an AK47. He is survived by a wife and daughter (just like Sanjay Dutt), who is only 18 months old.

Major Manish never said ‘I have a daughter’ before he took the decision to attack the terrorists in the darkest of nights. He never thought about having a family and he being the bread earner. No news channel covered this… Their aim was to show how he (Sanjay Dutt) defied the TADA charges and they were so successful that his conviction in possession of armory had no meaning. They also concluded that his parents in heaven must be happy and proud of him.

Parents of Major Manish are still living and they have to live rest of their lives without their beloved son. His daughter won’t ever see her daddy again.

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The views expressed are of the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions or policies of the Indian Defence Review.

About the Author

Maj Gen Mrinal Suman

is India’s foremost expert in defence procurement procedures and offsets. He heads Defence Technical Assessment and Advisory Services Group of CII.

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One thought on “Strange priorities of the Indian media

  1. Media in India is an absolute hogwash and to further add to how ignorant, arrogant and selfish our so called social elite are. We give more value to people like bachans, kapoors, dutts and can even start off a regional unrest because of them. This truely defines the patriotism of our country.
    I am sure Sanjay dutt is going to make a statement about this brave hero Maj Manish and be easily looked on in awww by the public. It will be one of his bollywood nakra’s, atleast he needs to learn from something from this failed institution called bollywood.
    I believe that India should have compulsory military service for everyone, this will atleast create a sense of ownership to this country while the reality of war, terrorism and death will certainly strike a meaningful patriotism in Indians. Bollywood is no where close to being patriotic, its more a brothel for mental mastrubation.

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