The so-called crime serials on television, especially in Kannada, have become the byword in cheap, sensational, titillatory, voyeuristic yellow-journalism.
Privacies are invaded, reputations are shreded, insinuations are hurled, blood and gore spilt with such stunning lack of taste and sensitivity that it boggles the mind.
As the humourist Pranesh alias Gangavati Beechi puts it, “Naavu henge aagogiddivi andre, naalakku hena beelade iddare, nammige nidre ne barolla (we have become such we can’t grab five winks if we do not see four corpses).”
Working firmly on the simple logic that you should never let facts come in the way of a good story, the loud hosts of the two programmes have made their nightly incursions into necrophilia the first court of public resort.
How lovely, then, that one of the two “Cheap Justices of the Low Court of Karnataka”—Balakrishna Kakatkar of “Crime Story” on Udaya—should himself get embroiled in a blazing controversy that he would have been hollering about in high decibels otherwise.
For those not following the case, Kakatkar’s wife was found dead in mysterious circumstances along with a relative last week. The police version is that wife and hubby were separated for a long time, that the lady had run into business losses which prompted the alleged suicide, etc.
But, as the Mahatma could have but didn’t say it, those who live by third-rate journalism will die by it.
Vijaya Karnataka—a publication where the other host Ravi Belagere of “Crime Diary” has a column—has reported the presence of a “suicide note” which allegedly throws light on Kakatkar’s wife-beating and drinking.
That may not exactly be enough to implicate Kakatkar, but sauce for the victims is sauce for the victimiser, and some affected souls have mounted an SMS and blog campaign , alleging a cover-up and urging the National Human Rights Commission and Lok Ayukta for an investigation.
Cross-posted on sans serif