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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.

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