Sunday, Aug 14, 2022
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The Other Voices: The World Of Mouthpiece Media

This election season, mouthpieces of specific groups are working overtime to drum up support for different ideologies or vote banks

The Other Voices
The Other Voices

In the run-up to any election, all political par­ties get busy fighting a bat­tle of per­c­­e­p­tion. And since narratives help build per­c­e­p­tions, the prelude to polling is marked by a war of narratives. This war is relentlessly fought either by media organs affiliated to parties or ven­­tures that identify with an ideology or com­­munity. Out of the five states where election is being held, Uttar Pradesh matters the most for the she­er size of the electorate: 17 per cent of India’s voters.

The tug of war in the largest state is interesting to watch. Lucknow-based Arun Khote, executive editor of Justice News—a portal that claims to sensitise the masses about atrocities against Dalits by collating reports and analysis abo­ut the social group in the mainstream media­—­has been following this war closely. The BJP is desperate to retain power in UP, but Khote believes it has lost the war of narratives to Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Akhilesh Yadav, who has left the ruling party “dazed and confu­sed” by consolidating the support of MLAs who have jumped ship from the ruling dispensation.

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