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Indian Media on Asbestos

August 2, 2010

In one of my recent post, I mentioned about a new report on asbestos danger in India. The report was a collaborative effort by international Consortium of Investigative Journalists and BBC. Tehelka from India was also involved in this investigative report. India has become one of the major consumers of asbestos in the world even after numerous convincing scientific reports about dangerous health affects of asbestos. Now you will expect that Indian mainstream media will atleast mention about this report or about asbestos in general. But, sadly asbestos news has no glamor quotient and that’s why it has been neglected completely. I searched for asbestos related news on CNN-IBN, Times of India, The Hindu and Tehelka and barring Tehelka (which was part of the investigation), none of them had any news about this particular report. Even general asbestos related news over the years were negligible. Here is the number of news articles I found on their websites while searching “asbestos”

Times of India: 4 (2010), 2 (2009), 1 (2006), 1 (2004)

CNN IBN: No article about Asbestos mining or consumption in general.

The Hindu: 2 (2009)

Tehelka: 2 (2010), 2 (2009), 2 (2008)

These numbers are ridiculous!! While you can find never ending news about Cricket or Bollywood, real news is missing most of the times, forget about in-depth analysis. Unless there is some glamor, sensation attached to the news item, Indian news media continue to ignore major issues troubling India. Tehelka was the only one which had detailed news coverage about this issue. While Times of India did cover asbestos related news from Jaipur, but it was mostly hidden inside city section and lacked detailed analysis. It’s pathetic!

Picture credit: Flickr user noneck | Used under Creative Commons License

Filed under: India,News

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