Skip to main content

Arnab's arrest: Is it BJP vs Shiv Sena via Sushant Singh Rajput and Anvay Naik?

By Rajiv Shah 
I am a little confused. How does one describe the arrest of Republic TV anchor Arnab Goswami? Most top newspapers, even as stating that they disagree with Arnab’s style of “journalism”, have condemned it, and so has the Editors’ Guild, which is headed by Seema Mustafa, founder of left-of-centre site thecitizen.in. A Republic TV insider suggested me, refusing to directly defend Arnab, that it all started with “clash of ego” between Arnab and the Mumbai Police Commissioner. 
No doubt, Arnab’s way of interpreting things – whether it was the arrest of journalists across India, or of activists allegedly involved in the Bhima Koregaon violence, or for that matter of students and ex-students, even women, participating in the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) movement – were highly objectionable. It appeared to me, as did to many other journalists, that he was defending the authoritarian hand of the government.
Arnab even took the National Investigation Agency (NIA) and Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) story on Sushant Singh Rajput suicide case on face value and carried out a running campaign against his ex-girl friend Rhea Chakroborty for abetment, though all of it appears to have fallen flat now. The argument against him is: If he could run a campaign against Rhea, what moral right does he have when an architect and his mother left a suicide note accusing Arnab?
No doubt, there is reason for politicians, including those in the Congress, who are opposed to Arnab as “supporter” of Prime Minister Narendra Modi or people around him, to feel happy over the arrest and say: “See, you will reap what you sow.” After all, Arnab did one thing very effectively on his channel: He would call politicians of all hues, but specifically shout at, at the top of his voice, those who are anti-Modi.
The commentators, either of the Congress or others who are justifying Arnab’s arrest, have recalled the suicide note, which is main the reason cited by the police for his arrest, albeit in the periphery. Their main sentiment centres around feeling happy about the need to “punish” someone who had come down rather heavily on the opposition to Modi, going so far as calling them anti-national.
I don’t have any definite facts. But I suspect, the Shiv Sena, which is leading the ruling alliance in Maharashra, may have been the main brain behind the arrest. The reason is simple: The “suicide note” was by architect Anvay Naik and his mother, ethnic Maratha. Supporting the cause of those who committed suicide would help helpful Maratha nationalism, described as “Maratha Manus” by their founder, Bal Thackeray.
The logic runs like this: Those abetting a Maratha’s suicide should be punished: The same argument which BJP tried to use while campaigning in Bihar polls with posters of Sushant Singh Rajput, a Bihari who committed suicide. It’s another thing that BJP campaigners, who held high posters stating that Sushant Singh Rajput “murder” wouldn’t be forgotten, forgot it rather too soon.
Be that as it may. But if Arnab’s arrest is because of the solid proof of abetment of suicide, no one should have any objection. But I have the but feeling that, just as the previous BJP-led government under Devendra Fadnavis, closed the chapter to defend Arnab, the present Shiv Sena-led government is seeking to take revenge for the way the Republic TV is campaigning against it.
Yet, no one appears to be asking one crucial question: Why is it that the law and order machinery, of late, become, increasingly politicised? It has failed to act independently of the political masters – whether it is NIA under the Modi government, or the BJP government in different states, whether Uttar Pradesh or Haryana, or under the Shiv Sena rule in Maharashra...

Comments

Natubhai Parmar said…
Agree with your views Rajivbhai.

TRENDING

Top upper caste judges 'biased' towards Dalit colleagues: US Bar Association report

By Rajiv Shah  A high profile report prepared by the influential  American Bar Association (ABA) Center for Human Rights , taking note of the fact that “in the 70-year history of the Indian Republic, only six Dalit judges have been appointed to the Supreme Court”, has taken strong exception to what it calls “lack of representation of Dalits” in the legal profession and the judiciary.

Billion vaccine doses? Devil is in details: 70% haven't got 2nd jab; numbers jacked up

By Prof Ujjwal K Chowdhury*  India has reached the one billion Covid-19 vaccinations milestone. It is indeed a great news and a big salute to the less paid ordinary health-workers in interiors of India for this feat. The government wants all of India's 944 million adults to get vaccinated this year. Around three-quarters of adults in the country of 1.3 billion people have had one shot and around 30 percent are fully vaccinated, the government says.

Savarkar 'criminally betrayed' Netaji and his INA by siding with the British rulers

By Shamsul Islam* RSS-BJP rulers of India have been trying to show off as great fans of Netaji. But Indians must know what role ideological parents of today's RSS/BJP played against Netaji and Indian National Army (INA). The Hindu Mahasabha and RSS which always had prominent lawyers on their rolls made no attempt to defend the INA accused at Red Fort trials.

Buddhist shrines were 'massively destroyed' by Brahmanical rulers: Historian DN Jha

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

Failure of 'trickle down theory' behind India's poor Global Hunger Index rating

By Dr Gian Singh*  On October 14, 2021, two organisations, Concern Worldwide (An Irish aid agency) and WeltHungerHilfe (a German organization that researches the problem of global hunger), jointly published the Global Hunger Index (GHI) for 2021. These organizations have included 116 countries in the world hunger rankings.

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

Nehru legacy? GDP-centric growth has had 'no positive impact' on people's livelihood

By Dr Kamal Nayan Kabra*  Experience has shown that many counties adopt measures to go in for the growth of their GDP, basically in the existing framework, though also going in for, at the same time, new products and technologies and similar other changes. It is believed that by means of this process enough new job opportunities would emerge to meet the economy’s needs both in terms of numbers as also in terms of the requisite remuneration (wages) as also the supplies of the goods and services to maintain the economy on an even keel.

March opposes Sabarmati Ashram renovation: 'Mahatmaji had kept open for access to all'

Counterview Desk A Sevagram to Sabarmati march, which began on October 17 from Wardha (Maharashtra) and will end on October 24 in Ahmedabad (Gujarat), has demanded that the Sabarmati Ashram, the government should not impose "the fashion and glitz of a shallow modernity" at the cost of Rs 1,200 crore, in the name of renovating the Ashram founded by Gandhiji.

Conceived as infrastructure, western approach 'not fit' for building Indian cities

By Arjun Kumar* A recent webinar on Rethinking the City, organized by the Center for Habitat, Urban and Regional Studies (CHURS) at the Impact and Policy Research Institute (IMPRI), New Delhi, even as stating that Western concept of city cannot be applied on India, insisted, urban areas were conceived as infrastructure, disregarding the actual inhabitants who live in there. Those who participated in the webinar included Prof Pithamber Rao Polsani, Faculty and Dean, School of Advanced Studies and Research, Srishti Manipal Institute of Art, Design & Technology, and Tikender Singh Panwar, Former Deputy Mayor, Shimla and Visiting Senior Fellow, IMPRI. The session was initiated by Tikender Singh Panwar providing the context on the current state of city planning in India. He emphasized the need for more sustainable models in order improved urban habitation. Prof Pithamber Rao Polsani focused on two important factors that force us to rethink the city as a construct and a space of habita

As Afghan economy crumbles, West working out emergency plans for 'cash airlifts'

By MK Bhadrakumar*  The Taliban is getting many suitors lately. It is far from the “pariah” that the Biden Administration thought it was destined to be. During the past month alone, the Taliban received six suitors from the region and beyond offering courtship – the foreign minister of Qatar; the special envoys of Russia, China and Pakistan; the High representative of UK Prime Minister; and the foreign minister of Uzbekistan who visited Kabul on Thursday.