The best and most important learnings are best done from the mistakes of others.
Detail from Cloister Conspiracy, a sculpture by Philip Jackson, pictured during his one man exhibition Sacred and Profane, at the Bishop's Palace in Wells, Somerset.
Considering how many women make mistakes getting justice for themselves, here are some quick tips for getting the scales of media justice to tip in your favor.
Step 1: Choose your court. Media or law?
Explanation: Cases drag on for years in media courts and justice is like a distant lighthouse - usually on the other end of the rocks where your ship flounders. Media courts, on the other hand love to dispense justice and live in the moment.
Your case will be over within the week! If at all it is not dismissed on sight.
Read on. The following document explains how to apply successfully in media courts.
Step 2: Choose your assaulter carefully.
Explanation: Some groups of people do not commit wrongs. Other groups of people do horrendous wrongs. Therefore, it is in your interest to get assaulted by those who do wrongs instead of those who don't. And for heaven's sake don't accuse media. That will get buried faster than a rotting body in a mafia don's backyard.
Only exception is, of course media that has been declared wrong. Like Tehelka or something. Take your cues from ... never mind.
Step: 3: Avoid police stations
Explanation: Do not rescue yourself. Wait for someone to rescue you and force action instead of brazenly speaking up for yourself. Women demanding their own rights is what we want for our FUTURE... right now, unless you want your attention seeking nature exposed, you had best wait for someone to explain to others how you were violated. Plain fact of the matter is that if you are ashamed of yourself, great! If you don't blame yourself, you'll get blamed for seeking attention. I mean who wouldn't love people noticing their humiliation, right? So wait to be noticed when someone is free.
Step 4: Avoid proofs, remain anonymous
Explanation: Do not go to doctors while examination can prove the crime against you. That is the old fashioned "court of law" method. See the Mumbai Gang Rape of photojournalist. Proofs got her attackers nailed, but media mostly yawned once that part started. They recovered stones from Soni Sori's body. Thenga. The reason for this probably is that doctors and forensics professionals probably don't have the idle time to appear on talk shows, so the attention deficit media moves on to more affordable headlines like a grasshopper on cocaine. The key parts of the crime against you must be of the "he said, she said" variety, so that available panel experts can cover them, whatever they are.
Step 5: Most important - GIVE MEDIA EXCLUSIVES!!!
Explanation: You can be as wronged as you like, but the real key to getting media to get justice for you is for you to also give them something they want. Media wants TRPs. Media wants exclusives. Leave your suicide note in your bedroom, where reporters can get it from cops and cover to the point of hysteria. Try nice leaks that can be published as they are to avoid reporter overwork syndrome. Try leaking CDs of accusations. India TV will butcher your assaulter on prime time.
== Afterthought ==
What happens if you ignore these rules?
Don't be like Tanu Sharma. Who Tanu Sharma? Some attention seeker. Do you see her in news headlines?
Accusing media of harassment? The first rule of the fight club is you don't talk about the fight club. This is almost as bad as accusing Harish Bhatia of Dainik Bhaskar of exploiting female employees. Bet you didn't hear such blasphemy either! Are you crazy? No talking about the fight club. Do a Radia tapes on it right now. Raised to the burial power of a paid news report.
Worse! Facebook update as a suicide note? Seriously? That is almost as bad as a forwarded SMS as official resignation that even trumps legal contracts. Now if it was a Youtube video of a suicide attempt, perhaps it could be forgiven. Better still, a media only event.
Now they are saying Tanu Sharma needs psychiatric attention. Obviously! Why would a woman who works for India TV not *willingly* socialize with powerful people for money? You think they are running a media house or something?
Friends, family and dear beloved fans. It is a sad day for humanity. A very expensive dearly cherished vehicle is no more. We shall mourn its sad demise.
I understand that the leading question in everyone's mind is how. Well, a car like this has a mind of its own, and it used to like to go on drives. That day, as it was leaving, I did my best to stop it, but it wouldn't take no for an answer, so I sent a security detail after it to protect the driver. No there was no driver. This was a very expensive car, you understand? It had self drive.
Who was the chap who got out of it?
No one. No one got out of the car. It was a hologram. The company said it was a feature for third world countries where people may be shocked by a car that drove itself (Haven't you watched "Love Bug", idiot?). So the car had this feature installed, where after a crash, a hologram shows a person exiting it safely, so that people don't worry. Also people can be a bit rattled after an accident and imagine a young man got out of my Aston Martin, if they aren't used to self drive.
My Aston Martin drives itself. Which is why it crashes sometimes. Artificial Intelligence is so unreliable in 3rd world countries. So this car was in the habit of going on drives, and this turned out to be its last one.
*phone buzzes* One minute. *Checks message*
So like I was saying, there was the driver in the car who was an ex-fighter plane pilot (you must admit it is pretty atriotic to employ ex servicemen) and he tried an outside loop, because he saw the security detail and thought it was a dogfight. So anyway, in the middle of this Outside loop, a car came into his way from nowhere. The police are trying to find out the motives of the people in this car trying to prevent a patriotic pilot from practicing his moves. Alas, as it often happens with rich victims like this car, the truth is likey to forever remain hidden.
Anyway, under the circumstances, we did the best we could. We protected the driver who TOTALLED my beautiful Aston Martin (Gandhi, you owe me one) and we saved the underpaid and overburdened police the added burden of interrogating yet another witness to this spirited car's mishap. If my driver totals the car, last thing I'd want is to leave him there for the police to hold him responsible for my precious Aston Martin. Whenever my driver totals my Aston Martin, his security's brief is to protect him. Forget it already. It is procedure.
We did the best we could, recognizing that us elites have an added responsibility of making the lives of the less fortunate, easier.
Who was driving the car?
Are I told you na! No one was driving. You think this would have happened if someone was driving? He was off duty behind the wheel. Driver. He confessed too, once he realized he had harmed an innocent car. What's his name? Bansi something.
What about your son?
My son is out of the country and unavailable for comment. The accident feature hologram had been designed to look like him as a mark of honor.
*phone buzzes* Just a minute. *Checks message*
What accident were you asking about? The Maruti 800 that upturned two cars on Peddar road? I have no idea. I don't drive cheap cars. My own car is fine. It is in a garage in Dubai. We have changed its nameplate to protect its privacy. Media has no ethics these days. They had printed the story of the demise of my beloved Aston Martin. Imagine!
No no, the car is fine, the son is fine. Both are abroad. No comment on whether they are together or vacationing separately. No one trashed my Aston Martin. I was just trying to console you because *you* were worried about some Aston Martin. He doesn't even sound Indian.
I hope the matter is now clear and you can proceed to the next outrage instead of inventing some Aston Martin accident... There are serious crimes happening like young children traumatized by traffic police:
I have been reading news on this drought of yours and the misery you are in. I thought that the joke has gone too far, and today might be a good day to reveal that you have been pranked. It is time to stop crying about not having water and realize that things are going exactly to plan and we all can have a good laugh and you can stop pretending to suffer then.
"There will be total support from the government of India," Sharad Pawar told the Rajya Sabha
He was speaking about Maharashtra's drought on the 8th of March. At that time 3908 villages were reeling under drought. Reeling is turning round and round, like we used to as kids. It is supposed to be fun, but what is fun if not shared? We now have over twelve thousand villages reeling. Now THAT's fun.
The MAHAcartel (Abbreviation for Maharashtra State Government) is of course dead certain this is a natural drought. I am inclined to agree. Nothing except the nature of politicians and their cronies can explain such a grand achievement.
Two days later, Sharad Pawar spoke of cooperation, "I want to appeal to the people of Maharashtra that as water-crisis is terrible, water should be judiciously used. At one point, people will have to share water in villages. Therefore, being patient, people should cooperate with each other," This actually makes sense, because if government tankers are not going to reach the thirsty, then only cooperation can save his friends from business losses, because otherwise they are going to have to buy water, and we all know how terrible that is.
Sharad Pawar had also said "In 1972, shortage of foodgrains was felt tremendously. Foodgrains had to be imported from abroad. Now we have sufficient foodgrains. However, this time there is no water. We cannot bring water from elsewhere," But fikar not, things are not as dire as all that. They are managing.
Fact is, within days of news of sugarcane planting being hit by the drought, the relief package had been announced. Actions had been taken to provide immediate relief to the impoverished. For example, removing curbs on the sale of sugar and scrapping state purchases to may allow Bajaj Hindusthan Ltd. (BJH) and Balrampur Chini Mills Ltd. (BRCM), the biggest mills, and other producers to boost revenues by about 27 billion rupees ($497 million) annually. Is this not funny? Your orchards lie devastated, but the sugar industry was even more fragile than your shrivelled lives.
The US $394 Maharashtra Water Sector Improvement Project that started in September, 2005 and was scheduled to be closed in March 2012. The main components of the project are: (i) Water Sector Institutional Restructuring and Capacity Building, (ii) Improving Irrigation Service Delivery and Management, (iii) Innovative Pilots, and (iv) Project Management. It was expected (on paper) to increase the irrigation coverage by up to 222% and crop production by 5-20%. Farm incomes on average are expected to increase by 49 percent, and about 33,610 farm families fully dependent on agriculture will be enabled to rise above the poverty line by the time the project is completed.
World Bank President Paul D. Wolfowitz and Finance Minister P. Chidambaram signed the agreement and World Bank agreed to give us US $ 325 million of its cost. When I say give, I'm using the term loosely. We are going to have to return it. For the ignorant, World Bank is a bank that aims to end poverty in the world by giving poor countries large loans for large projects with small returns and more damage. And the poor people it helps are usually empowered under the working principle of "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger". Tough love and all that. It is like a credit card. The advertisement only shows the spending part of it. Never the repayment. There is something about world level glamour. It sounds like a Miss World "world peace" speech, no?
The World Bank loan from the International Bank of Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) will fund rehabilitation and modernisation of 286 selected irrigation schemes covering about 670,000 hectares of cultivable area, enhance the safety of 291 dams besides helping in capacity building of water users associations.
It will also support four user-centred aquifer level groundwater management, and four innovative irrigated agriculture pilot projects.
Actually, Wolfowitz remembered you in his speech. "I hope this project - which is aimed at making every drop of water count in Maharashtra - can be an excellent example of development work making a real difference for people battling to improve their lives,"
It is a full year since the project was scheduled to complete, and we are still talking about 0.1% increase in irrigated land since 1999, which the state government has white chitted itself into God knows what wet dream it had (wet is only in dreams when it comes to irrigation - unless you are a sugarcane field or other agricultural crop like distillery, thermal plant or steel plant).
MAHAcartel claims to have invested over 700 billion rupees to bring you water. The management is superb. They are bringing it to you in tankers on payment. Never let it be said you were left high and dry as long as you paid for it. Even the World Bank paid for you to get water. The state paid. Chidu called it a national priority. Surely you aren't so stingy?
What remains to do? Laugh. It is April Fool's day and the joke is on you.