DSP Sunitha Reddy Coverage — Not an encroachment of privacy, but in Public Interest


Of late, there has been lot of discussion among Telugu people about the coverage given by TV9 on various issues. Some are making scathing comments on TV9 about their biasedness in coverage of issues, some are questioning the “Character assassination done by Telugu media (read it TV9)” on the persons involved in the issues and a few more accusing TV9 for violating privacy of the persons involved in various issues. However, digging into issue further reveals truths, justifying TV9’s coverage.

TV9 editor expressed their way of handling the woman issues without violating the privacy of the persons involved in the issue. TV9 Editor added, they have aired stories where daughters-in-law were being harassed for dowry or burnt for dowry or for “not giving birth to a male child” etc. In all such cases, they did enter into their premises but did not face any resistance from the accused or victims and so they had not transgressed anyone’s private spaces. TV9 editor mentioned the stories they aired where they exposed the tricks of several cheating babas and holy godmen and also explained their path is full of thorns as they face attacks in social media by riff-raff elements, physical threats , communal, casteist, politically motivated attacks everyday.

The specific issue where TV9 has exposed extra-marital affair of a top cop has driven extra scrutiny. However, the key point that needs to be raised is whether top cops can set bad precedents like these. Just to refresh memory, FIR filed by husband states – his wife and her lover, both are policemen, cheated him. While TV9 stood by the husband, some people questioned TV9 the way it handled the issue and the stand they taken. Husband and his mom approached TV9 as this issue has public interest because cheating wife is a dynamic lady police officer. However, lady officer’s version is TV9 is encroaching her private space. However, the lady officer ignores the fact that she is having an extra marital affair with another person in the same department. TV9 also justified ushering camera in their bedroom to expose the facts. The lady police officer was given a chance to explain her version but she chose not to do so, hiding somewhere in response to the verbal advice of her paramour and she did not even respond to many messages from TV9 channel to give her version. TV9 justified all the coverage by proving weak husband was visibly terrified by the cops as they threatened to shoot him dead in an “encounter”.

Finally, TV9 editor mentions about the aversion of some people for Telugu channels makes them so blind as to dare to attribute anything to the channels and make blatantly false allegations.

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