Stories of newspapers running blank editorials and news columns during the censorship era of the Emergency in the mid-1970s are legion.
But in this day and age, when space is calculated in square centimetres?
Star of Mysore, the 35-year-old evening newspaper from Mysore, ran this front-page on March 3 to protest the murderous assault on journalists by lawyers in Bangalore.
A front-page editorial noted grimly:
“The Fourth Estate is the new target.
“In the new resurgent India, the media has played its role in exposing the wrongs done to this nation by its own people and has given voice to the weak. The Press, the fourth pillar of democracy, has so far kept check on the three other powerful pillars—the Executive, the Legislature and the Judiciary—and has done so in the interest of keeping the citizenry of this nation informed and to get it involved in national issues.
“This success of the media in getting people involved in issues that concern the nation is what has made the other three pillars uncomfortable…. A media that helps create awareness among the citizenry making it pro-active is not in the interest of the powerful in the other three pillars of democracy. And so, on March 2, while a certain section of lawers went on a thrshing spree on media persons, the police stood like helpless bystanders.”
Image: courtesy Star of Mysore