India and Pakistan are on the brink of huge confrontation after Pakistan shot down two Indian fighter jets in response to the bombing of alleged terrorists’ hideouts inside Pakistan. Tensions have risen since a suicide car bomber killed at least 42 Indian paramilitary soldiers in Indian administrated Kashmir on Feb 14.
We are in the era of technology and media and it is obvious that media is playing an important role in the shaping of public opinion and people perception regarding an issue. But when it comes into the wartime the media has to be very careful and responsible in reporting the conflict.
It’s true that every media organization has got the ingredient of national interest and patriotism in its editorial policy, but sensationalism, disseminating false information, glorifying war is not and has never been the ethics of conflict reporting.
The two archrivals and nuclear powers are being forced towards destruction by the news anchors of media. Fortunately, the Pakistani media has shown more responsibility in the current scenario, but on the other hand Indian media has gone totally crazy and what it has been doing since the allegation, cannot be called journalism by any definition.
After the Indian alleged attack in Balakot, Pakistan, the Indian journalists and anchors were jumping with joy but when Pakistan returned that attack by shooting two Indian jets and capturing on pilot alive, the Pakistani anchors also started sensationalism.
There were few media channels on the both sides of border trying to report factually but the ratio of channels fueling the war between neighboring countries were certainly high.
If we see the history of wars including the World Wars II, media propaganda has played a very destructive role in escalating the conflict. After the advent of Internet and convergence of media, the common masses also got access to social media platforms and the passive audience became active. This changed the very nature of media in today’s world, and now people are seen using social media without responsibility.
For instance, the troll competition on Twitter between the people of India and Pakistan has also added fuel to the fire. Yes, there was a portion of sane users on both sides, who ran the trends like #SayNoToWar and #PakistanLeadsWithPeace, but it’s astonishing to see the professional journalists and media anchors are beating the drums of war. Needless to remind you that at times of war, truth is the first casualty.
I think it is time for the media anchors, journalists, and social media users on both sides to play a positive role in de-escalation of the conflict between the two states and save our succeeding generations from the scourge of war.
Poverty and sufferings are actually the real enemies of both countries, which need to be fought. Let’s promote peace as users of social media, instead of war-mongering. Let’s press our governments to resolve their bilateral issues through dialogue and diplomacy and not through war.