Saturday, January 8, 2005
Media watch on relief efforts
Maya made this comment to my previous posting:
If not anything else, why can't the media and other social organisation highlight this aspect of a transparent agency and at least make people aware of this wonderful idea? Why aren't journalists, who are more keen to report on personal stories of victims, ready to highlight this point and why aren't edits being written about this?? why? why? why?
Well, we are still getting stories about how a number of people survived the agony... These stories touch our hearts, don't they? They also show how human spirit triumphs over adversity.
Express did have on page one a few days back how touts may be trying to exploit the situation and on how we all should be a bit discreet while being charitable. Today FBI issued a warning against frauds tying to solicit money on websites.
That both government and private agencies are out to make money is more of a suspicion in our minds stemming out of our lack of confidence in the system. There is no evidence yet of a fraud. Actually, it is too early to make any assessment on how well relief agencies have handled the funds. And, too early to authoritatively comment on it. In fact, many agencies are still getting contributions. We all will have to wait for a while to see how well the rehab efforts take shape.
If you remember, after the Gujarat earthquake too a similar situation prevailed. An air of suspicion on whether the money is being rightly channelised. That a lot of the money collected didn't reach the victims were reported quite widely then.
We have a very vibrant press... Our media ranges from very conservative to sensational. A very broad spectrum, that any free society can rightly be proud of. I am sure our media will keep a watch on the relief efforts and scream if something goes wrong. It's too early to assess the success or otherwise of the rehab efforts.