The Supreme court of India, in July, issued a ruling which disqualifies members of the Indian Parliament  if they are convicted by a court for crimes with punishment of two years or more.  CBI has been investigating corruption charges against Mr Rashid Masood, a member of the ruling Congress Party and it is close to issuing a verdict on him. The verdict is likely to unseat Mr Masood from the parliament if the Supreme Court ruling is respected. A similar case, that of  Mr Lalu Prasad, is also nearing a verdict in a week or two. Read the nice article in Economic Times – Conflict between democracy and its funding through corruption holds India in thrall

The ruling coalition had failed in its attempt to pass a law in the parliament to negate the Supreme Court judgement. On September 24th, the union cabinet met and approved a counter initiative which has now been signed by the President of India. It has become an ordnance protecting the seats of elected officials with a criminal record. No citizen will interpret this move as anything other than sheltering corruption. Main stream media has generally chosen to remain silent on serious corruption issues against the ruling coalition.

Social media platforms have been abuzz with complaints against print and electronic media which is today filled with “Paid News“. Press Club of India (PCI) committee investigated the allegations against Indian press and issued in July a report blaming “paid news” as having become a feature of the media landscape since the 2009 national election. It expressed astonishment that a large section of the media is completely silent on this malpractice.

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