Corruption Cases:Mercenary Media’s Wrong Priorities

‘Indian Express’ doesn’t agree with Kiran Bedi’s explanation about the air bill that must be in thousands only. Unfortunately, the same newspaper dare not publish some real investigative piece on the day-light and outright loot of the biggest state of the country by its ruler that must be running into hundreds of thousands crores rupees annually. As per one estimate, every day’s collection is somewhere near one thousand crores through the state machinery that is dedicatedly working for only this sole purpose. Just Noida and Yamuna Expressway would have contributed more than few lakh crores to the kitty.

I came out after a long time to go up to PVR, Spice in sector 32 of Noida for a movie last week. For all these years, I didn’t see much activity in the sector. A mall building had come up in one corner but it was occupied by some offices. Amar Singh during Mulayam era had laid foundation for the administrative office complex of Noida Authority, but it never came up and as I heard it was shifted to another location. In news papers I had seen ad with master plan for developing the area as a Connaught Place of Noida. At the extreme end, only colourful building of Adobe Inc. USA came up. For a long time I thought that was a hotel.

I was surprised and shocked to see the whole of the land of one full sector meant to be for a city centre getting boundary wall all over starting from the last stop of metro to the stadium. A journalist friend informs that the whole land has been awarded to just one builder for Rs 6500 crores. And can one guess what the builder will do in the sector? To my query against an ad, one agent quoted Rs 68 lakh for a studio flat of 805 square feet in one of the skyscrapers coming up on the land. How much money in cash would have gone to the M-Fund?

In the Noida extension land deal that was very much in media, the builders had to pay Rs 6000 per square metre to M-fund. It was still profitable as Noida Authority charged only Rs 6000 per sq mtr when they could sell the same for a fabulous amount to the customers.

As one lead media man writes, ‘Mayawati has emerged as the great dictator of Uttar Pradesh, someone who controls India’s most populous state with an iron fist.’ None dares to raise any voice against her decision on her pet projects, be it the monument of Rs 685 crore in Noida or of multiple of that amount in Lucknow. Why are only just few builders getting all the properties or big projects, be it Noida-Greater Noida Expressway, Yamuna expressway, or India’s F1 race track? Some say, ‘now it is not a commission, it’s decided on major share offered in the business for the icon of the dalit.’

Why doesn’t the judiciary or the crusaders of RTI speak out and act? And where will all the wealth accumulated in this manner be used? I would not have bothered if it would have gone to uplift the aam dalit of the state, if the money would have ensured a good dwelling for all dalit families or provided special coaching for the 100% of the dalit students specially girl students or on their healthcare. Unfortunately the whole of the wealth getting collected is for an individual. No one knows how will the person use it? Will it be for winning the general election by paying each and every voter with a lakh of rupees each?

It is unfortunate that neither the opposition parties nor corruption crusaders such as Kejriwal, Ramdev or Anna talk about this open corruption and accumulation of black money with any precedent like it. Media has gone mercenary. It will keep quiet for a cost.

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