Art & Entertainment

Sridevi’s Untimely Death And Indian Media’s Bizarre News Coverage

Cyclone Biparjoy is not the first time viewers have been left in despair with Indian media’s dramatic news coverage.

Cyclone Biparjoy; Sridevi's death
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Much before cyclone Biparjoy made landfall in Gujarat, a news anchor of a certain news media channel took Indian television news by storm on Wednesday night, by reporting about the natural disaster in the most disastrous way possible. 

For those caught unaware, Cyclone Biparjoy made landfall over the coastal areas of Saurashtra and the Gulf of Kutch, and caused heavy rainfall along with strong winds. Reportedly, around 150,000 people in India and Pakistan had to be evacuated before its landfall. 

However, the reporter of the news channel stood in the channel’s studio with an umbrella and acted her heart out as she twisted and ducked as if under the influence of stormy winds in order to make the viewers believe that she is reporting from ground zero. She was also shown inside a helicopter surveying tumultuous sea waters, all with the use of VFX.

During the bulletin, she said, “We have reached Dwarka in Gujarat. The wind is blowing so hard that even standing here is difficult.. wind blowing at a speed of 150 kmph.. it is tough to be standing or speaking…”

The report was not only bizarre but looked caricaturish, especially since it was a natural disaster that ended up affecting the lives of thousands of people. And she didn't even have a second thought before performing those antics. Moreover, guess what? It was not just her dramatic moves but the footage that played with the bulletin was not of Cyclone Biparjoy but of Hurricane Ian in Florida from September 2022. 

Needless to say, Twitter users couldn’t help but troll the reporters after the clips surfaced online.

Well, this is not the first time that Indian media has created a media frenzy with their absurd reportage. All of us remember that Sushant Singh Rajput suicide case, and how the likes of Rhea Chakraborty and Deepika Padukone were hounded and questioned about their ‘drug addictions’. 

In fact, during the time of Sridevi’s death in 2018, the media went bizarre with conspiracies regarding her death, just for higher TRPs. When everyone got to know about the untimely death of Sridevi in a Dubai hotel, the Indian media went all the way to her brother-in-law Anil Kapoor in Juhu, Mumbai apart from waiting at the airport, the cremation ground and Sridevi’s house in Mumbai to get each and every detail.

The Indian news channels and social media was full of tributes as much as conspiracy theories, despite no official statement from the Dubai police or the family. 

But the Indian media got on board multiple ‘experts’ to comment on the late actress’ plastic surgeries, her fat-burners or steroids while they were reporting the news of her death. 

In fact, a news channel shared a clip of Sridevi dancing at the wedding which she attended in Dubai just before her untimely demise, and wrote with it, ‘Sridevi ka Aakhri Dance’. Some news channels had reporters sitting in a bathtub to speculate how she would have felt at the time of her death while others had anchors standing in front of a bathtub with wine on the side, hinting how it could also be due to alcohol. 

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Celebrity or not, Indian media is showing no correct means to report a person’s death or a natural calamity in such a manner, just to gain higher TRPs. A line between journalism and sheer exploitation is not to be crossed, and we have seen it multiple times in the past with cases of Arushi Talwar, Sunanda Pushkar and Sheena Bora. But despite every case and the subsequent lashing, the Indian media does not stop. 

A death or a natural calamity is no joke, and cannot be trivialised at any cost whatsoever. 

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