Archive for January 2007

KARNATAKA CHIEF JUSTICE CYRIAC JOSEPH ON MEDIA: “Unconfirmed, baseless, irresponsible reports anti-national” and are like “fatherless babies”

January 30, 2007

Karnataka Chief Justice Cyriac Joseph on irresponsble media

After Karnataka Lokayukta Justice Santosh Hegde decried “trial by media” (click for earlier post here), it is now turn of another prominent personality of Karnataka today – none other than Chief Justice Cyriac Joseph – to condemn irresponsible reporting by media.

Cyriac Joseph on corrupt media

Newspaper we respect – “The Hindu” – deserves kudos for carrying this report. Not surprisingly no other media, newspaper covered this scathing – but valid – attack by Justice Cyriac Joseph at all! Selective self-censoring by media? We saw that in coverage of Balakrishna Kakatkar’s wife and kin’s highly suspicious death earlier this month – where Bangalore media covered up the deaths under the threat from drunkard, wife beater, blackmailer Balakrishna Kakatkar. 

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We salute Chief Justice Cyriac Joseph to openly make these excellent observations on sorry state of media today.

Cyriac Joseph on corrupt unethical media

Very harsh words out there by Justice Cyriac Joseph – but perfectly valid points. Kudos to Chief Justice for speaking his mind on this issue.

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SAGA OF FAKE JOURNALISTS CONTINUES – Yet another blackmailer in the guise of “journalist” arrested

January 28, 2007

Fake journalists galore in Coastal Karnataka

Regular readers of this blog are aware how this blog has fought against blackmail journalism prevailing in Mangalore and Udupi and also at Karnataka / India in general. In fact, we started this blog to expose two fake journalists entering hospital emergency room in Manipal and taking photos of patients there without authorization. In the process they also interfered with medical staff who were busy treating seriously injured patients. And to top it all, notorious Udupi Press Club supported these fake journalists.

Since then we have regularly reported on criminals running newspapers with sole purpose of blackmail, murderers posing as journalists, editors like B.V.Seetharam of Karavali Ale group taking money from jobless politicians to create communal riots,  journalists running liquor shops, journalists looting temple money by currying favour with political parties, journalists taking “gani kappa” from mining lobby truck owners etc etc.

And now comes a report from Puttur about a “journalist” who tried to blackmail businessmen and was caught by police.

Fake journalist arrested in Puttur

At the rate at which fake journalists are being caught in Udupi Mangalore area, one has to wonder are there any genuine journalists left at all in this region?

We yet again demand there be a standard, uniform media credentials or ID in India. See our earlier post on “Case for standard / uniform credentials and ID for media in India”.

Every other professional job in India requires some sort of qualifications and credentials, but anyone claiming to be a “journalist” without any ID can go scot free. Any attempt to question this results in the usual rhetoric about “attack on freedom of press” without addressing the core issue of fake journalism.

If not government, how difficult it is for genuine journalists to come together and establish some sort of ID / verification mechanism for their own benefit before general public start treating every journalist / media person as fake? It is time real media personalities stand up on this issue.

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We are interested in your thoughts, so feel free to comment here. Emails can be sent to udupipressvictim at gmail dot com

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TIMELY ARTICLE BY DR.U.R.ANANTHAMURTHY ON FALLING MEDIA STANDARDS IN KARNATAKA

January 25, 2007

Here is a timely article by Dr.U.R.Ananthamurthy about falling media standards in Karnataka. It was originally published in Udayavani Sunday Edition on 21-1-2007.

U.R.Ananthamurthy on falling media standards in Karnataka

Dr.Ananthamurthy hits the nail on the head in above paragraph. All this sleazy journalism initially won’t attact common reasonable people. But when you are bombarded with cheap articles and programmes even those who are not interested in sleaze start reading / viewing them occasionally or to pass time. Then it becomes a dangerous addiction which can lead to anti-social acts or crimes.

Very apt observation – considering recent events in Bangalore where Balakrishna Kakathkar of Udaya TV “Crime Story” who relished in showing blood and gore and survived on blackmailing people in his TV programme is now accused of pushing his wife and kin towards death. Click here to read our earlier post exposing Balakrishna Kakatkar’s dangerous drinking and criminal habits. On top of that these deaths are being pushed under the rug by police and media who have brushed it under the rug of “suicide”

BALAKRISHNA KAKATKAR OF UDAYA TV CRIME STORY: Another criminal media personality of Karnataka – now accused of driving wife to death by beating, drunkenness – Media, police in a hurry to declare death of his wife, relatives death on same day as “suicide”?

January 20, 2007

Balakrishna Kakatkar Udaya TV Crime Story - wife kin dead. Police, media hushing up the case as “suicide”?

Yet another “media personality”, “journalist” of Karnataka is now under the scanner of public, police alike.

Balakrishna Kakatkar, once a small time blackmailer now famous as anchor of Udaya TV’s “Crime Story” is now accused of driving his wife to death. As reported by Vijaya Karnataka (see below), Balakrishna Kakatkar routinely assaulted his wife and last week was denied boarding at Delhi airport because he was too drunk. And yesterday his wife and another relative allegedly committed “suicide” taking cyanide.

Balakrishna Kakatkar Vijaya Karnataka report

What is odd about the whole incident is the unusual hurry in declaring these deaths as “suicide” where Balakrishna Kakatkar himself phoned his media friends and informed them of the deaths within minutes of incident. Very fishy indeed – but then again, Balakrishna Kakatkar who built a whole business based on blackmail in the name of his “Crime Story” knows all tricks and loopholes in the law, so not surprising the speed in which incident is being covered up by police, media alike.

Also interesting to see different stories and varying coverage of this double “suicide” in Karnataka newspapers. Except Vijaya Karnataka, every other newspaper probably afraid of Balakrishna Kakatkar’s blackmailing power through “Crime Story” reported this as “suicide”. Otherwise respectable “The Hindu” reported one of the deaths as “heart attack”! (Click here to online edition of “The Hindu” joke of a report on this incident)

We earlier reported in this blog about Balakrishna Kakatkar during rowdy Hitendra Prasad’s murder in Manipal.Balakrishna Kakatkar also had a distorted episode in “Crime Story” about Manipal hospital case where “journalists” Umesh Marpally and Srijith entered emergency room and were kicked out when they took photo of naked patients.

According to Deccan Herald (link to online news report from Deccan Herald here), cases were filed against Balakrishna Kakatkar last year for trying to murder Viresh, a driver and for misusing his licensed revolver. So Balakrishna Kakatkar does have lot of criminal history, yet Udaya TV gives prime time to this criminal.

Balakrishna Kakatkar

Whatever the true story is in the case of his wife and relative’s death, Balakrishna Kakatkar who allegedly made crores by blackmailing people through his “Crime Story” on Udaya TV now stands exposed with his wife beating and drinking problem.

Yet another media personality of Karnataka stands exposed. It is a shame that UDAYA TV gives time to such chronic wife beater, drunken criminal Balakrishna Kakatkar who initially had lot of promise but later turned “Crime Story” into a money making institution for himself.

Big question however is, who will make a “Crime Story” episode on the suspicious death of Balakrishna Kakatkar’s wife and kin within hours on same day?

UPDATED JAN 22, 2007:Many readers have mailed us saying “Hai Bengalooru” this week has written about Balakrishna Kakatkhar and unnatural death of his wife and kin, so it is not fair to paint whole media community in Bangalore as hand in glove with Kakatkar or afraid of Kakatkar. While we congratulate Ravi Belagere for being an exception and taking a principled position, we stand by our question – why Bangalore media and police are in such unusual hurry to wrap this case as “suicide” and why is that after one day whole incident has disappeared altogether from the pages of newspapers?

REAL STORY BEHIND PROTESTS AGAINST NAGARJUNA POWER PROJECT PADUBIDRI UDUPI:How Dubai based gas mafia,corrupt media,foreign fund rich Guruvaayanakere Nayak mafia,fake environmental groups,politicians,out of state contractor lobby come together to oppose development project in the name of saving the environment

January 13, 2007

Nagarjuna Thermal Plant Udupi - real reason behind the protest

After our last blog post about gifts showered on Udupi media by anti-Nagarjuna protest organisers (based in Dubai) we received several responses. Curious, we dug further on who really is behind ongoing protests against Nagarjuna Thermal power plant and we unearthed several fascinating and at the same time disturbing details on nexus between several vested interests including role of media. Click here to read earlier exclusive blog post on how Dubai based gas mafia showered gifts on Udupi media.

There appears to be few key players who have their own agenda funding protest against this development activity.

First, Dubai based promoters of Nandikoor Janajagruti Samiti – this organisation is funded by Balakrishna Shetty and Laxman Shetty both have lived in Dubai for several years and are said to have vested interest in gas export business. That is the main reason, argument of NPCL opponents is “We support gas based power plant” as they have vested interests in pushing their own business. Media of Udupi has remained silent on this aspect of Nandikoor Janajagruti Samiti as they have been showered with gifts from Dubai  in terms of money, bottles, imported cigarettes and even free trip to Dubai all sponsored by these vested interests.If Nandikoor Janajagaruti Samiti is really serious about environment they would have opposed Gas based power plant as well?

Nagarika Seva Trust Guruvayanakere is a fake environmental organisation established with sole purpose of receiving massive foreign funding

Second, the notorious Nagarika Seva Trust of Guruvayanakere. This is mainly a letterhead organisation issuing press releases on daily basis whose press clippings are then faxed to environmental NGOs at Netherlands, Norway, UK, USA to collect crores of rupees.Some newspapers have reported that Somanatha Nayak, convener of this closely held private organisation has purchased several prime real estate from the money received from foreign NGOs who are obvilious to fake activism of Nagarika Seva Trust Guruvayanakere. Some time back questions were raised even in Karnataka State Assembly about foreign funding of this organisation which protests all developmental activities in Karnataka. We also would like to know nature of relationship between OXFAM UK and Nagarika Seva Trust Guruvayanakere.Some ex-members of Nagarika Seva Trust have also alleged massive irregularities in financial management – not surprising to anyone who know letterhead NGOs who survive on foreign dollar / euro handouts. It has to be noted that Nagarika Seva Trust Guruvayanakere successfully closed prestigious iron ore plant at Kudremukh – reason given was “saving environment” as usual but everyone now knows that Nagarika Seva Trust acted as agent for Bellary mining lobby who stood to gain the most from closure of mining at Kudremukh.Nagarika Seva Trust also routinely gifts expensive items to media so no wonder no newspaper has exposed illegal activities and financial irregularities.

Third and probably most disturbing news to unemployed youth of Udupi Mangalore:It has come to our attention that all plum contracting work for the project is being now given to out of state contractors from Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Tamilnadu. These contractors stand to benefit with continued protest – so it is said they are indirectly supporting the protest and at the same time hiring hundreds of workers from their native state. So due to misguided protest, local youth – who already are forced to move out of the region due to lack of jobs – stand to lose. Same thing happened with MRPL, Konkan Railways where local youth were blacklisted for employment due to their role in protests – and today these companies are filled with out of state workers.

Fourth, corrupt media elements – who have been showered with gifts by Dubai based gas mafia and Guruvayanakere Nagarika Seva Trust NGO dollar mafia. So during press conferences, media take unofficial role of these anti-development mafia. Whatever happenned to impartial reporting? This was in full display during Jayakrishna Parisara Samithi press conference where Ganesh Prabhu of “The Hindu” (whose sister magazine FRONTLINE has a glowing article on MRPL this month – ironically MRPL also encountered same kind of protest by same group of people when it was being constructed) is said to have dubbed those supporting the project as “pimp”,”dalal”. Irony of this situation is same Ganesh Prabhu of Hindu newspaper has accepted lavish gifts from both Dubai based mafia and expensive European gifts from Nagarika Seva Trust Guruvayanakere. Who really is “dalal” here Mr Prabhu!? (Readers of this blog are encouraged to write to Editor, Readers Editor of Hindu at readerseditor@thehindu.com about corrupt, partial correspondents)

Fifth, self styled leaders of fishermen community. While common fisherman is struggling with increasing fuel price, lack of proper distribution and storage costs, some leaders who may not even know what fishing is are using this opportunity to get ready for next MP election. It is common knowledge that use of modern fishing techniques, fishing during rainy season when fish are breeding is the reason for decline in catch, these leaders use some antique report to blame lack of fish on everything under the sun but their own action.

Less said the better about other characters involved in anti-Nagarjuna project– predictable characters one can find in any Indian district. Local politicians who can’t see beyond their vote bank instead of leveraging developmental activities in their district, hired goonda and protesters (Padubidri protest audience is primarily hired people – paid 50 rupees a day), misguided college school kids who don’t need any reason to boycott classes and break some vehicle glasses, fake environmentalists with equally fake documents etc etc.

All in all, quite sad state of affairs. Every state in India is competing to get large projects – and here we have a case where a private company is investing large amount of money using latest scientific method to dispose off ash but few misguided elements funded by foreign money are opposing the project. Luckily, it appears common man has now realised that there are no danger with Nagarjuna Power Plant – and real danger is posed by Dubai gas mafia, Guruvayanakere Nagarika Seva Trust – a playground of Somanath Nayak couple who are after foreign dollars and their dubious links to foreign NGOs and corrupt media elements of Udupi who are unofficial spokesman for Dubai gas mafia opposing Nagarjuna Power project in Padubidri Udupi District.

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BLOG EXCLUSIVE:NAGARJUNA THERMAL PROJECT – UDUPI JOURNALISTS SHOWERED WITH GIFTS BY DUBAI BASED ANTI NAGARJUNA SPONSORS!

January 13, 2007

Dubai based anti-Nagarjuna sponsors shower Udupi media with gifts and money?

Regular readers of this blog may not be surprised by this scoop – considering how we have exposed corrupt elements of media in Udupi Mangalore in this blog for months. For example: taking money from iron ore truck owners to put pressure on district administration, taking money during communal riots to add fuel to the fire, blackmailing restaurant owners, blackmailing police, blackmailing doctorsindulging in criminal activities like murder, running liquor stores and what not.

And now our sources indicate that anti-Nagarjuna elements – primarily sponsored by vested interests sitting in Dubai (hence their demand for “Gas based” project in place of Thermal based plant) have showered gifts on media in Udupi Mangalore to write favourable stories in newspapers.

This is in addition to cash showered on media by fake environmentalist organisations like Nagarika Seva Trust Guruvayanakere who get millions of dollars from Netherlands, Norway, USA by sending press cuttings of what is published by these journalists! How come media is not investigating acres of benaami land purchase by Somanatha Nayak, Vidya Nayak  at Bangalore?

See a pattern here? First these fake protesters pay media to write story in their favour. Then the protesters make copies of those newspaper cuttings and fax it to Netherlands, Norway, USA and get millions of dollars!

Nagarjuna protest - criminal elements funded by Dubai money? 

Hired goondas with active support from media of Udupi attacked vehicles belonging to Nagarjuna Thermal project. Same photos were probably sent to Netherlands, Dubai to collect more money in the name of “environment”

No wonder protest against Nagarjuna Thermal Power plant has fallen flat and same 20-30 people are protesting for days by hiring beedi workers for 50 rupees a day. And media reports this as some major protest while in reality there is no grass root support to these protesters with an agenda.

Dubai angle to anti-Nagarjuna is very interesting – it is well known that anti-Nagarjuna protest is backed by people sitting in Dubai. Balakrishna Shetty – President of Padubidri Janajagriti Samiti is based in Dubai with interests in gas exports.  That is one of the main reasons these fake environmentalists are saying “Thermal plant not ok. But gas plant OK!” – because they can get their commission.

It is said that expensive gifts and cash from Dubai has been showered on media to keep pressure on government against the project. More details as they become available – initial news indicate that reporters of prestigious national newspapers like “The Hindu” also accepted lavish gifts and cash from anti-thermal/pro-gas protestors and now act as anti-Nagarjuna spokespersons in press meets. And journalists have fallen to this trap – not surprising to readers of this blog who are aware how rotten media in Udupi is.

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KUDOS TO PUTTUR POLICE:Police prevent media from photographing dead bodies of accident victims inside hospital

January 9, 2007

Indian Police usually get bad rap in media and blogs. So when they do the right thing it is our duty to bring it to the attention of world.

Puttur police prevent photographing dead bodies inside hospital

Earlier in the week there was a deadly accident near Puttur in which four people who were heading to an event were killed.

Since these people were travelling to a marriage related function, they had lot of jewellery on them. These days every lay person with a digital camera or cell phone claims to be from media or newspaper. So in the absence of any press identification, police did the right thing by preventing paparazzi from hospital and preventing potential theft of gold from dead people.We have covered in this blog several incidents where journalists of Coastal Karnataka have been caught red handed in criminal activities.

We also applaud police of Puttur for upholding dignity of dead people by not allowing them to be photographed inside the hospital.