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PIB carries PM Modi's Digital India initiative to the next level with PhotoShop
"Life is the art of being well deceived; and in order that the deception may succeed it must be habitual and uninterrupted."………..William Hazlitt.

Before I jump over the main topic about the latest howler of IB Ministry – the photo of PM's floodplain survey, let us share some information about 'Photoshop.' The primary idea of this new computer based technique was to make an image look more attractive rather 'perfect' to the audience it was intended to address. And the resultant improvement was known "The Photoshop Effect." 

The images that you see in newspapers, magazines and on TV screen aren't always real. The men and women you see there often do not even exist. Photoshop is capable of altering a person's entire appearance. Photoshop's 'editing of images' is an exercise to make people or persons in the image appear more professional and appealing.

Of late, out of kilter, the government Press Office seems to suffer with teething problem as it is trying to fit into the new realities with the new bosses and keep itself in their good books. The south of country is facing the worst flood disaster of the century, and ironically, in the midst of tragedy, the Government Press Office was busy in polishing the image of a Prime Minister who didn't need, in the least, at this calamitous juncture that exercise. 

It was a failed effort to present a poignant photo of Shri Narendra Modi who is fast losing his appeal after Bihar, Ratlam and now Gujarat Panchayat election defeats – a domino demo of politics in back gear.

Since independence, the country is facing the repeat flood disasters that have always been accompanied with the picture (before the great newspapers began to put up advertising campaign of front pages and news became another commercial product) of Prime Ministers flying surveying over the inundated swathes. 

No one ever took that ritual seriously. It was a part of flood routine and public relations – nothing more. However, the new smart act of Country's Official Press Information Bureau - the tweet of photo of India Prime Minister Narendra Modi surveying the scene in Chennai, where flooding has taken hundreds of lives was a poor example of lickspittle or flattery. In the photo, the prime minister can be seen looking at the tragedy through a round window on an aircraft. Submerged buildings can be clearly seen through the viewer.

However, the original photo tweeted by the prime minister himself appears to show a damaged area with trees and water.

Exhausted with the instant derision and mocked on social media, the government on Friday expressed regret for releasing a doctored photograph of Prime Minister Narendra Modi conducting an aerial survey of flood-hit areas in Tamil Nadu.

"Out of the seven pictures released, one picture used the technique of merging two pictures," said the Information & Broadcasting Ministry. Stating that "this is being referred to as 'Photoshopping' in sections of media", the ministry added that "this happened due to error of judgement and the picture was subsequently deleted". The ministry further said that the Press Information Bureau (PIB) "regrets" the release of picture.

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