It's been a few days after a Pakistani terrorist, involved in the attack on a BSF convoy in Udhampur, was captured alive. The media is all over the issue, covering every movement and digging for every minute detail in the case.
Pakistani terrorist Mohammed Naved after being arrested in Udhampur following the attack on a BSF convoy.
While the bravery of two BSF jawans martyred in the shoot out is getting well-deserved appreciation, sensational statements by the terrorist Naved, or Kasab 2.0, as he has been dubbed, are also grabbing a lot of media attention.
A petrified father
The Indian media managed to get in touch with the extremist's father, through a number provided by Naved himself. The old man from Faisalabad described himself as an unfortunate father of the attacker and revealed that Lashkar-e-Taiba simply wanted his son dead.
Ajmal Kasab at Mumbai's CST, where he gunned down several people during the 26/11 attacks.
In a telephone conversation, lasting little over a minute, a hysterical Mohammed Yakub said that now that his son has been caught alive, he and his family are being hunted both by the Lashkar and the Pakistan army. Pakistan journalists were also stopped from visiting Naved's village in Faisalabad.
This particular case, like other cases that came under the media spotlight, raises some very important questions. Is it justified to hound the family of a terrorist, even before they could recover from the shock caused by the actions of their son? The trauma of their loved one becoming a gun-wielding fanatic is already a lot to deal with, why can't they just be left alone?
Apart from being dangerous for the family of the assailant, such actions can also be counter productive to the entire investigation by complicating the situation.
A regular practice
Even in the case of Ajmal Kasab, the media did not lose a minute in converging to his hometown, ready to bombard his family with questions. Did they not consider the dangerous implications of exposing the family of the man involved in a highly sensitive case? That too a case which involved some very powerful people of Pakistan.
BSF Jawans Subhendu and Rocky who lost their lives fighting off the terrorists.
The same unforgiving and insensitive attitude was displayed while covering the Nirbhaya rape case. The families of the accused, who were as shocked as others at the act of their kin, faced a barrage of questions relating to the case, which they were themselves puzzled about.
With time the media seems to have become so keen on getting exclusive bites that all sense of rationality seems to have been lost. How exactly is the poor layman, who is unfortunately the father of a terrorist recruit, supposed to provide information regarding a highly discrete operation, that too in public?
Brave martyrs of the BSF who died fighting off terrorists being laid to rest.
By publicly exposing their names and personal details, the media might just be putting their lives in jeopardy. In addition to this, being labelled in public as relatives of a rapist or a terrorist, creates a risk of the family being stigmatised in the society and paying collectively for the sins of one family member.
The terrorist's hometown
On top of everything, the entire area including the village which happens to be the terrorist's hometown, becomes a centre of media frenzy. This time, Faisalabad has come under the spotlight as a terrorist's hometown just like Azamgarh in UP and Bhatkal in Karnataka have had to endure the humiliation of being repeatedly brought up as places where dreaded terrorists hail from.
On the other hand, it is fortunate and praiseworthy that the family members of the BSF's brave hearts haven't already received a visit from the media. It is good to see that they haven't been asked "How they feel," about their loved ones being martyred.
The world is losing humanity bit by bit in endless conflicts and heinous acts of terror. It is of utmost importance that we do not lose our own in the process of reporting them.