The Prime Minister of India met the Press today. As always, on his own terms. He came. He spoke. He walked off or rather walked into the crowd of celebrity journalists, generously disbursed handshakes – hundreds of them, stuck a broad smile on his face for scores of selfies, spouted a few trademark one-liners, and went off without answering a single question. But none of the media anchors seemed to be complaining – not even the hard-boiled ones. Indeed, they had spent a couple of hours speculating over all the Ws and the H of the meeting. What was it all about? Why was it being held? Who were all invited and attending? And, how would it all end up! Well, to me it seemed it ended up with the media having egg on their face, but which they were loath to either see or wipe off. The last I heard, they were still going gaga over what a great guy Modi was, to have simply shaken their hands!!

Is this what the media in India has come to? Granted journalists in India are so starved of soundbytes from the powers that be they have forgotten what a true interaction with the press ought to be. Still it seems comical, even absurd, that 200+ hacks could wait 2 hours simply to get a handshake and a selfie with a PM, and to have tea and biscuits without him, even if the PM is the man for whom the clock never stops.


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