Monday, February 7, 2011
First up, The Journalist would like to wish all its readers and the public-at-large a prosperous and fulfilling “Losar” – as we mark our own new year and celebrate the present, reflect back on the past and look ahead with hope for the future. And what a good note to indeed begin the year of the rabbit as the top echelons of the government mixed heartily with representatives from all walks of life and discussed the MTRs.
The MTRs have exposed, whether we like it or not, the inconsistency of the media in its coverage of news and the judgment of the news’ news worthiness. The media has come under the glare, for getting it wrong. Sometimes the media has been faulted for being immature, at others for being arrogant and yet at times, the media personnel themselves have felt a sort of step-motherly treatment coming in from various quarters, mainly the government. Fair enough.
But here was an opportunity for the print media to not just hang around with the PM, the Cabinet, MPs, NCs and local reps but hang around and observe at first hand the various interactions and plans and policies that were not just highlighted but dissected and discussed on a very altruistic yet practical level. It was neat indeed. The government moved about in buses, sang songs of yesteryear, bantered about lightheartedly but with one sole business in mind: to update the common people on developments concerning not only their own villages and districts but that of their brethren as well.
Gems of wisdom came in the sound of words such as the need, as the PM stressed, to develop our collective identity as Bhutanese under one monarch before caste and creed and the lot play the divisive role. Other segments included the clear-mandate of the government to help make possible and ensure that basic necessities, such as schools, hospitals, water, electricity, roads and connectivity to the rest of the country and access to such. That before any of these infrastructure is laid bare, provided and utilized to further enrich the community and the country, nothing else merits importance, least of all, development of the kind where being generous to one would inevitably make the other poorer. That service in and to the triple gems begins not with bombastic claims of becoming a pilot, an engineer or a doctor, but by remembering that basic sense of being Bhutanese, where children would always answer the question with the words “I’ll look after and repay the generosity of my parents.”
Those if you cannot treat, respect and look after your beloved ones how could you ever foster love for the greater good? That we must not be trapped in the shallow thinking of seeing one thing as ‘good’ and the other as ‘bad’. The opposition is not the enemy of the ruling government. It is also Bhutanese and wants to serve its Bhutanese brethren as best as it can. That the people should not see parties as being ‘enemies’ – but they are rather, different roads that lead to the same destination. Just because the roads are different does not diminish the ultimate goal, one of service to our king, country and citizen.
Everything is interconnected and inter-related with the same consequences for all and sundry should we forget the goal and become lost in the journey’s many twisted forks. That this plan has achieved more in the last 2-3 years than in any other period. That the path where our collective destiny lies is well laden with good hard working people that go about the vagaries of their duties as solemnly as they can with the minimal fuss. And that every meet the people session concluded with a prayer to the ever-lasting and giving jewel that is our monarch, our sovereign.
That the media, including this weekly, could not cover such a momentous occasion with the proper coverage that it deserves is a short coming on our part. We are in the habit of always looking out, which is not necessarily bad, but it never did anybody any harm to take the blame and say, “okay. The buck stops here and we messed up.” The Journalist applauds the government in its conduct of the MTR and promises to cover the discussion in the remaining districts as best as it can.
Meanwhile, Happy Losar and a Happy Ride.