The Bhartiya Janata Party came to power after getting a majority of its own in the 2014 general election. The every day promises of PM Modi always portray the brighter side of India under the BJP era. The promises to bring the moon to the nation by giving employment to seven million people in a year or by safeguarding the rights of the press turned into a nightmare by the annual reports.

Why rank so low?

The reports of Reporters without Borders on the “World press freedom index 2018” give ranks to the countries under the press freedom criteria. In which India slipped two ranks to 138th position in the list and one rank above Pakistan.

This shows how Modi government is failing in safeguarding the press. Many times the Indian media is criticized for its deteriorating reporting standards, jaundiced coverage of politics and this report put another scar on the freedom of the press in the largest democratic country like India.

Since the last four years all news channels are mucked with words like tolerance, intolerance, nationalism, anti-nationalism, hate speeches, dividing people according to their color, religion and if any media house start reporting this annoys the ruling party, and from that moment goons start insulting the author on the social platform. But one thing that occupies my mind is that why after so many “Acche din” India ranks 138th in the WPFI slipping two ranks below from the last year?

Reasons for the rank

The solid reason behind this low ranking is the killing of three journalists during the period of their work.

The RSF ranks the countries by passing them through five criteria’s in which India failed completely. This report shows us a scary picture especially in democratic countries where the political goons threaten the journalists and when a journalist was killed, and then the government is trying to defame the journalist by using offensive language (Gauri Lankesh was shot down outside her house in Bengaluru in September 2017).

This is not the only one reason behind this ranking as many times when the journalist tries to develop the media environment and try to portray the real India. This brings the media house into lots of trouble (the CBI raids the NDTV offices and journalists houses in 2017). The Nagaland page, Eastern Mirror, and the Morung Express, three Indian newspapers in the northeast of India, run blank editorial sections to protest against the problems journalists are facing as the government is busy in safeguarding the goons.

As the days are passing the whole media fraternity is divided into two halves — one is blindly supporting the government and suppresses the one who asks questions to the governments and the other is still fighting for press freedom.

In 1975, Indira Gandhi declared an emergency and suspended fundamental rights of the press. Today in 2018 there is no emergency, but press freedom is at crossroads. The press is free but also controlled. The media has played historical roles in providing information to the people and suppressing the “freedom of the press” means suppressing the freedom of the people.