Many responses to earlier blogs centre on the need to have an alternative media--particularly a TV channel that projects a "nationalist" perspective.
The idea is not new. Over the past 10 years I have attended numerous meetings and met people professing an interest in the project. My experiences have left me quite disheartened.
Let me narrate some of my impressions and conclusions:
1. Any alternative channel has to have a very broad political orientation. It must be able to cater to the widest community that feels left out from the existing liberal consensus. Unfortunately, most of those who have leverage over the money bags have a narrowly sectarian agenda, whether political or denominational. In recent years, numerous charlatans have raised money from the markets on the strength of their Hindu or Sangh credentials. Most of these projects have sunk without trace. And all because a tiny group wants total control.
2. The sums of money involved in putting together a news channel is staggering--nearly Rs 500 crore to begin with. In today's market? Forget it.
3. Can we blend professionalism with commitment? Without professionalism and quality you can't compete. I'm not sure this is fully understood by all those who are rightly exasperated by the liberal media.
4. The existing "nationalist" media is pedestrian. Unfortunately, its practitioners don't even recognise it.
My conclusions may seem cynical but I am willing to be proved wrong.