Its been more than 36 hours that superstar Sridevi passed away but the mortal remains of the superstar are yet to be brought back to India for a funeral and understandably, there is a sense of inquisitiveness amongst fans, media outlets and general public to know the actual cause of her demise. While the initial reports suggested that Sridevi passed away due to a cardiac arrest, the forensic report, which came out after 24 hours, revealed that the actor passed away due to accidental drowning in the bathtub of the hotel room she was staying at. This report led to a lot of speculations around the news and soon the chaos started. Few hours after the forensic report was revealed, the Dubai Police Department transferred the case to the Dubai Public Prosecution according to standard procedure as is done in any case of a death outside a hospital in Dubai. A leading daily in UAE, Khaleej Times, has been posting the latest updates on their Facebook page about the progress of the case which so far is at a juncture where the mortal remains of Sridevi are yet to be handed over to the family members of the actor. Officials at the Indian Embassy are working closely with the Dubai authorities to complete the procedures appropriately.
While all this is happening, few television channels have started analysing the cause of death based on the forensics reports statement – ACCIDENTAL DROWNING. From recreating the visuals by photoshopping an image of Sridevi inside a bathtub and Boney Kapoor standing beside it to themselves sitting inside a bathtub and analysing the way she could have drowned in the bathtub, they have done it all. Preconceived notions, general perceptions, investigative narratives and indifferent approach by few television channels have clouded the case now which is now being termed as a ‘murder of journalism’ by many journalists and celebrities, and rightly so. Instead of waiting for the right authorities to complete the formalities, channels have built their own version of the story accompanied by group discussions with experts on a ‘panel’ from various industries.
While many celebrities have slammed the news channels for this kind of an approach, the LIVE discussions and analysis continue on many television channels. Prevalence of common sense seems to have hit rock bottom with such an approach where we haven’t allowed the family to grieve in this sad hour, but instead have chosen to do senseless reports on the cause of death of an iconic actress who has ruled the Indian cinema for more than three decades and has never failed to entertain/enliven us with her authentic and heart touching performances in cinema.