Small-screen warriors: Kejriwal stuns Modi on prime time

Small-screen warriors: Kejriwal stuns Modi on prime time

One may have to wait for another month to see whether Arvind Kejriwal stuns Narendra Modi in the battle of ballots in Varanasi but the top AAP leader has pipped the BJP prime ministerial candidate at least on prime time television.

A study by a private media watchdog Centre for Media Studies (CMS) said though Kejriwal got more airtime than Modi, most of the coverage was negative. For the analysis, coverage of Aaj

Tak, ABP News, Zee News, NDTV 24x7 and CNN-IBN were scrutinised.

The data collected for the coverage between March 1 and 15 shows that Kejriwal got 429 minutes on prime time while Modi got 365-minute coverage during the 8-10 pm prime time slot.

The poll schedule was declared on March 5 and the study covers a period just before and after the announcement.
Congress party chief campaigner Rahul Gandhi is third at a lowly 72 minutes while party chief Sonia Gandhi or Prime Minister Manmohan Singh did not even figure in the top-ten list.

“Our analysis of the first fortnight shows that though Kejriwal attracted more prime time coverage, most of it was negative. There were discussions on his resignation
as Delhi chief minister.

The negative coverage could also be attributed to his attacks on media,” Prabhakar, head of the CMS Media Lab, told Deccan Herald.

Among the top ten leaders on prime time are Lalu Prasad Yadav (Rashtriya Janata Dal), Raj Thackeray (MNS), Nitish Kumar (Janata Dal-U), Mamata Banerjee (Trinamool Congress), Mulayam Singh Yadav (Samajwadi Party), Akhilesh Yadav (SP) and Shazia Ilmi (AAP).

The 2009 study by CMS had shown that BJP MP Varun Gandhi, who made hate speeches, topped the list of leaders who got most time on prime time footage.
In the TV coverage, the Congress party is nowhere near the BJP (369 minutes) and the AAP (345 minutes) and is a distant third with 193 minutes. Prabhakar said the Congress presence in prime time is very low while in 2009, there was not much difference between the ruling party and BJP.

The study also showed that most of the coverage was on personalities (1,521 minutes) followed by Hindutva (1,417 minutes), parties (1,101 minutes), development (531 minutes) and corruption (268 minutes).

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