SOURCE: MAHESHA M / FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG
‘Dalla’ is a notorious word in India which means a person who works as a mediator between a customer and a call girl, but it became quite a common reference name to many Indian journalists who are part-time arms lobbyists, who are referred to as ” Dalla” by many defense analysts and enthusiasts for promoting import of weapons from certain weapons manufactures who pay them to promote their product.
Some section of Indian Dalla’s are busy trying to paint a very grim picture of Balakot Strikes and even suggesting that casualty figures which IAF believes could be hundreds actually be in close to nothing arguably without much proof or evidence to suggest that strikes failed to meet it their target. Even bigger, distortion of facts has been of repeated questioning of IAF claim that it shot down F-16 in events that followed after failed PAF raid across the line of control.
IAF provided evidence in form of AWACS Pictures and even gave transcripts of Pakistani intercepts which had confirmed that two planes had crashed in Pakistani occupied Kashmir. Souped up F-16 was seen as a front runner in the race to provide over 110 jets to IAF when it was just a two contender contest under now scrapped single Engine fighter procurement tender which now has officially has become MMRCA 2.0 with 7 participants now.
Arms Dalla’s who tried to swing F-16 deal with favorable coverage, now find them self’s in a soup after tender allowed all previous participants of the MMRCA back in the race. Some are still trying to claim that purchase of 36 Rafale Jets was a scam so that it is not considered in the new tender and another section is trying to promote renamed F-21 which they claim is best for India.
F-16 losing to older Mig-21 in a dogfight has even made it very difficult in public mind of India for it to be considered as a superior jet which IAF could want it’s hands-on, especially to those who have little understanding of the military weapons system so the narrative has been set to discard IAF claim of shooting down an F-16. Both Indian foreign journos are trying their best to discard F-16 kill claim but are unable to counter strong shreds of evidence provided by IAF.
Concept of conflict of interests and paid news are still alien to Indian journalism and most of all expense paid visits to weapons manufacturers location abroad and joy rides in Multi-million dollars fighter jet are passed off as standard of journalism, which has been going un-monitored leading to the creation of Arms Dalla’s with a pen, which is used as tool to influence public at large and give decision makers a free pass.
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