Barkha Dutt - One of the Finest Voices of Indian Journalism

Profile Jun 09, 2020

As we talk about this legendary woman, it would be of great disserve to her without acknowledging the fact that she has brought about a remarkable difference in the field of journalism. She proclaims to be inspired by her mother, Prabha Dutt who happened to be a journalist at Hindustan Times. Right from the celebrities to the common man, where everyone is bedazzled by her spectacular contributions to Indian journalism, she marked the beginning of her journey as an NDTV news reporter. She also hosted a talk show ‘We the Peopleʼ and ‘The Buck Stops hereʼ on NDTV for 16 years. The Kargil conflict(1999) brought her to limelight.

Sheʼs a firm supporter of agnosticism and a woman who is spontaneous and audacious in her kind. Sheʼs upright gallant and abides by the Uniform Civil Code. For her coverage of the Indian Ocean Earthquake and Tsunami in 2004, the Padma Shri award marked the glory of her vicious upward spiral in 2008. She's a woman who has firmly taken a stand for her at an age where most of us were unable to comprehend the difference between what is right and what isn't.

At a time when journalists are often mistaken for the phrase "get your hands dirty", Dutt clears the air explaining that journalism exposes you to all sorts of people and you have to deal with the unsavoury ones too but what makes you a true journalist is not jeopardising your morals, ethics and dignity. Even though India is recognised as a sacred land and is becoming progressive, paedophiles haven't ceased to exist. She shared one such instance of her life from her childhood- “Little did I imagine that this much-older, family figure—someone who would take the kids for piggy-back rides and twirl us around in the air—could be such a monster", she said.

She's a very strong political , extremely sophisticated, well-articulated voice against prejudice. December 2015 witnessed the launching of her very own book-This Unquiet Land: Stories from Indiaʼs fault lines. As the name suggests, she broadly focusses on the fault lines-corrupt politicians, rapists, murderers and spawns upon the setbacks of our legislature to suppress them. In all due respect to her profession, Dutt was advised to be neutral but yet she took a pro-Congress line. No sooner after the fall of Congress party in 2014, Duttʼs career was on a decline too. Radia Tapes controversy also contributed to her downfall. There was no solid evidence of her lobbying in the issue but her mere presence on the tape & closeness to the Congress party set rumours like a wildfire.


Currently, she is a columnist, contributor and editor at Washington Post and is bringing the issues of the poverty-stricken migrant workers in front of the masses and demands action for its betterment in all due media authorisation. Dutt has been trolled a lot but she sees trolling as something psychological. In her opinion, trolling gets you if you allow it to. She has not failed to channelise all the negativity into firm determination and let it affect her choices and opinions. She may not be a significant part of the TV any longer but she has definitely embarked upon the idea of pursuing a career in Indian journalism and has inspired masses by her wit and absolute mettlesome personality.

Bhoomika Valani

DJLIT Editorial Co-committee member. A keen reader, extrovert who loves writing poems a lot.

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