TV5 reported an incident where in reporter Suresh was beaten by a doctor in Rajamundry. The channel reported the story “rowdy doctor” wherein he hit the journalists who went to cover a story. TV5 claimed that some anonymous users reported to TV5 office that Geetha Mullapudi Hospital is following corrupt practices related to EHS card and fees reimbursement. Both the reporter and journalist were injured in the brawl. The media house reported that the doctor has support from elites of the societies and even claimed that he has relationship with a cabinet minister. Telugu360 gained access to the unedited video ( watch the video clip located left side of this article), wherein the doctor can be seen provoked by the journalist. Contrary to the unedited version, TV5 had telecast only the part where the doctor was hitting the reporter.
Telugu360 reached out to the doctor to know his side of the story. Dr. Mullapudi Rajendra Prasad has been in the dentistry profession for 17 years now and is chairman of Geetha Mullapudi International Dental Hospital. He adopted his village Dharmavaram village in Kovvuru wherein he conducted various humanitarian activities and health camps. He was even appreciated by the collector of the district. Along with local MLA Jawahar, he conducted Vanam manam programs.
According to the doctor, TV5 personnel contacted the doctor regarding advertisements. He wanted to run the ads for not more than 2-3 days, but the channel insisted on taking the one year plan for 5 lakh rupees. A fortnight ago, after ignoring repeated calls from TV5, the doctor texted them that he will not be able to pay such huge amount. However, on Wednesday, the doctor who wasn’t at the hospital was informed by his staff that TV5 reporters are creating ruckus in the hospital. Dr. Prasad had a telephonic conversation in which the reporters said that “since he is doing good work for his village they wanted to cover his story. He said “I hope you are not retaliating for disagreeing to advertise with TV5”. The TV5 reporters allegedly said that “we received small complaints against your hospital”. Upon hearing this allegation, the doctor rushed to the hospital. The after math of the incident can be seen in the video.
The remorseful Dr. Prasad held that his criticism about media dint go down well with the reporters and that’s where the violence started. He says it was in the heat of the moment that he assaulted the reporter and is apologetic about it. The doctor had submitted the proofs of text messages and calls from TV5 to the police. He agreed that it was unintentional. Even TV5 reported that the doctor had apologized and left the place silently.
Andhra Pradesh Home Minister Nimakayala Chinnarajapa contacted the Rajahmundry Urban SP and found out the details of the incident and ordered a probe. He even met the reporter and camera man in the hospital. APJF condemned the act.
If the buzz is to be believed, TV5 tried to contact other dental hospital in the area regarding advertisements and tried to create ruckus. But that hospital said, they will inform other media house about the atrocities by them. While the police investigate the issue, such allegations against a media house merely for advertisements will give a chance to raise questions about the trustworthiness of the fourth estate.