THR Raaga is the most listened to Tamil radio station in Malaysia with young Indians making up the majority of listeners. With that as a fact, THR Raaga possesses immense power to keep Malaysians of Indian descent informed with goings on at the sidelines of entertainment. With great power, comes great responsibility and THR Raaga has that onus. But, THR Raaga makes a botch of that heavy burden with it’s line up of programs, announcements and prioritizing.
I might be fluent in English and have a decent vocabulary but I don’t listen to Hitz FM or Mix FM. I used to in my schooldays because I was rather unaware of Tamil language’s sweetness back then. As a young Malaysian of Indian descent adult who wants to brush up her Tamil, I have been listening to THR Raaga. Unable to put up with the crap that radio station spews, I switched to Minnal FM in mid 2013. Minnal FM is better than THR Raaga in terms of Tamil usage and info dissemination but lately, Minnal FM is following the steps of THR Raaga, that is, utmost importance for entertainment.
How THR Raaga screws up priorities
Recently, due to a personal circumstance, I had the chance to listen to both THR Raaga and Minnal FM in an intermittent fashion and I am now able to present my appraisal on both radio stations, how their prioritization suck with THR Raaga leading the way.
Yes, no doubt that the mainstream of radio station is for entertainment but, when you have a listening fanbase whose community is problematic, the least you can do is try to keep the community informed in issues that matter in social responsibility application. But, what THR Raaga seems to do is make Malaysians of Indian descent give wholesome, encompassing priority to entertainment, misguiding the already misguided and Minnal FM is following suit perhaps to up its popularity among listeners.
Last week or so, both radio stations kept on blaring about Ketti Melam Kalyanam and another show organized by Minnal FM. Announcements and countdown to both events were aired every 5 minutes or so.
I really don’t see the usefulness of fulfilling the dream marriage of Malaysians of Indian descent. Instead of doing Ketti Melam Kalyanam, THR Raaga could have organized a competition for school children from deprived Tamil schools and give the prize money to equip the school with amenities. That would be useful innit and more sensible too. The kids will know that someone cares. With the reach THR Raaga has, endless possibilities are present. Instead they squander money away in organizing grand marriages and encouraging stuff of no real value. The Ketti Melam Kalyanam mirrors Namma Veetu Kalyanam aired in Star Vijay TV. Clearly, THR Raaga lacks intelligentsia and think tank as well as a dearth of perception on what’s really important.
It is as conspicuous as shit that the GIF exhibition and Ketti Melam Kalyanam plus free gifts such as Ipad, TV etc were used to lure Malaysians of Indian descent to splurge on needless stuff. And, the drooling of harebrained THR Raaga DJs who keep on promoting that they can’t wait to go shopping, how they bought stuff for Deepavali at cheap prices and offers and finally the varieties of collections, all these serve to suck in people even from the middle class families to spend off their salary on needless things. Many Malaysians of Indian descent too, rather than investing in good books/encyclopedia and knowledge based paraphernalia, rather buy this cretinism hollered by the THR Raaga’s deejays.
Another ‘hook line’ by the DJs – “if you wanna see us, meet us, please do come over to the exhibition.” I was thinking – why would anyone want to come over just to meet these DJs. The DJs present themselves as celebrities like a certain Datuk here and Minnal FM DJ’s are now doing the same thing. However, Malaysians of Indian descent are fatally attracted to such stuffs that they will be willing to fork out both money and time.
Dumb listeners succumb to this entertainment first, the rest next propagation masterminded by both radio stations. They keep on calling, saying that they are coming from as far as JB, this many people are coming, they will start early to get front seats, bla, bla, bla to catch the shows.
Of course, can go so far, pay RM300 for SIIMA Awards tickets, pay toll and pay for petrol for the long journey, take unpaid leave or even tell children to bunk school so that they can catch the shows but not go to free educational programs for Indians, free school kids motivational talks and book fairs in town a fraction of distance from where those shows are held. Say RM100 for motivation course and they will be lamenting shy high on why education is not given free. Excuses like, so far la, no time la and the plausible one, “I didn’t know.”
Because, both radio stations too, don’t announce the existence of beneficial programs run by educated Indians for the benefit of Indians here in the frequency they announce all the entertainment shows, not even hourly.
I am not asking or expecting THR Raaga to be Puritan and become boring – all I’m saying is, that its management should play a significant role to benefit Malaysians of Indian descent in education and social quality aspects information concomitant with entertainment because THR Raaga has a wide listener base. Arnold Schwarzenegger/Arnold Susah nak eja coming to India for the audio launch of I movie and him complementing actor Surya on the latter’s gym body was hot news on THR Raaga. But, a Malaysian of Indian descent, Sukesh Pandian , a student from University Petronas who invented STATS charger, a smartphone charger that converts body heat into electricity, enabling people to charge their smartphones on the go was not a big enough news for THR Raaga or even for Minnal FM apparently. Both THR Raaga and Minnal FM should have mentioned about Sukesh – he’s literally our nation’s pride. But, a road bully, Kiki Kamaruddin is fit to be interviewed. Just because Hitz FM did it, THR Raaga had to follow suit. THR Raaga has no sense of creativity whatsoever and just copies what other radio stations do. It’s director is a clueless idiot whom I would like to slap some sense into. I won’t mince my words. I am exasperated and I will be harsh. Appo aavathu voreikutha nu paapom.
Sonthe arivu tha illeh, sonna kude kekke maatinggerangge. When I post my opinion of betterment on THR Raaga’s Facebook page, they get deleted. Well, so much for constructive criticism. The DJs are bird brained whose thinking capacity is very limited. They and the holier than thou Malaysians of Indian descent think that by censoring words in songs from Tamil films like sex, rum, ganja, thooku kayiru, trouser avurum, quarter, etc, their social responsibility is done. Censoring those words don’t do a thing – as though Malaysians of Indian descent are so innocent, they will be spoiled when they hear such words. Instead of censoring such words, both THR Raaga and Minnal FM should censor stupidity in prioritizing. Stop celebrating the birthdays of Kollywood actors and start focusing on local issues involving not only Malaysians of Indian descent but Malaysians overall in stuff as important as entertainment. Our society cannot be improved by just censoring words in songs. Our youth watch porn; the word sex is an understatement. I know that THR Raaga is not here to improve our society but there’s something called conscience and goodwill. Even Retamil is a Malaysian Tamil entertainment online portal but we do our part in giving back to society by this Malaysian Indian Issues category.
And, tips for UPSR, clarification on PT 3 and tips for SPM are given in Minnal FM at 10 pm. Don’t the children need to sleep early in order for them to go to school/ write the exam in the morning? Air at prime time la but no, prime time is for entertainment.
THR Raaga’s try to be socially responsible and how they fail miserably
THR Raaga got this Pothunalam Arivippu (Public Announcement) and there is this announcement about role models:
- Rajinikanth bus conductor ah iruntharu
- Shahrukh Khan kadan vaanggi cinema city ku vantharu
- Messi tea vitthar (when it comes to non Indian we somehow manage to pick a proper one)
I am very much upset that our youths don’t have proper role models. We look up to actors such as Rajni, Kamal, Ajith, Vijay for inspiration and thats one of the reason things go wrong with our youths and THR Raaga ingrains this phenomenon further.
When you have public awareness announcement, please use proper role models that our youths will actually learn good things from. Why not talk about Dr. Abdul Kalam (Ex President of India) , Dato Thasleem (Our local legend), Dr Kadeer (Amazing public speaker and motivational speaker), Sabeer Bhatia (Founder of Hotmail), Shiva Ayyadurai (Founder of email), K. Ram Shriram (Google Board of director) , Sundar Pichai (Senior VP Google Android Apps) or Infosys CEO Vishal Sikka? I can give you a long list of people that our youths can look up to.
I applaud this attempt by THR Raaga but they can and must do better for our youth’s sake. Idolizing actors has to stop. Our youth is fighting over who is mass, Vijay or Ajith and THR Raaga is contributing to this stupidity imported from India. Ithu nallathukku ille.
Also, when informing something, a verification on whether the info is correct or not is critical for mass media – when funnyman Robin Williams passed on, the Minnal FM morning crew were discussing his illustrious and prolific career when one of the DJs asked whether Robin Williams starred in Night at the Museum to which another DJ said no. Buta. Vittaka Avvai Shanmugi is Mrs Doubtfire’s remake nu sollirupangge. But, at least Minnal FM mentioned about Robin Williams; THR Raaga blissfully did not.
THR Raaga should not think that by airing public awareness messages and censoring certain words from songs would make our community here all hunky dory. Ignoring the problem won’t solve the problem. THR Raaga needs to get its act together NOW.