Assam Assembly Blacklists BBC Docu, Opposition Protests Waste Of House Time

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Assam Assembly Blacklists BBC Docu, Opposition Protests Waste Of House Time

| Updated: March 22, 2023 14:04

The Assam Assembly on Tuesday passed a resolution against the BBC for its documentary on Gujarat riots, demanding “strictest possible action” against the BBC’s “malicious, dangerous agenda to instigate religious communities and flare religious tension and malign India’s global standing.”

The resolution was moved by BJP legislator from Jonai, Bhubon Pegu, during the ongoing Budget Session.

Congress, AIUDF and CPI(M) MLAs opposed the resolution and said discussions on it are a “waste of the Assembly’s time,” as it is a matter that does not concern the state Assembly.

The resolution states: “On 27th February 2023, the BBC released Part 1 of a shameful documentary. Through a false and fictitious portrayal of the events that occurred in Gujarat in 2022, it was produced with the sole reason of attacking our Honourable Prime Minister and the Indian Republic. The BBC has peddled false narratives in stark ignorance of the Supreme Court’s judgement dated 24th June 2022 and has painted India’s judicial system as compromised, which is a direct attack on integrity of India’s judicial authorities.

It further states: “Though continuing broadcast of this documentary, it has displayed its deep-rooted institutionalized racism. It is disturbing to note that even after 75 years of India’s freedom from ruinous colonial rule, the BBC seeks to continue to act as a true arbiter of India’s internal issues through its dubious journalism… Any attempt to rehash past incidents and create communal tension, especially by motivated foreign groups which seek to benefit from such religious chaos, must be prevented.”

Congress MLA Sherman Ali Ahmed, Independent member Akhil Gogoi and AIUDF legislator Karim Uddin Barbhuiya demanded that Speaker Biswajit Daimary allow showing film to understand its content and then have a discussion on resolution. During the discussion, Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma claimed that timing of the broadcast makes the motives suspect.

“Till some time ago, India was 11th in terms of GDP. Gradually, it is India’s pride that it has become the world’s fifth biggest economy,” Sarma said. “After our Prime Minister has been given a clean chit by the Supreme Court and after the Court has conclusively closed this chapter, why has BBC made this documentary? And broadcast it just as India assumed the G20 presidency?” he questioned.

He added: “They (BBC) want to challenge the Indian judiciary; they want to challenge India. And it can also be because we have economically surpassed the country that colonised and ruled us. This is propaganda so that foreign investment does not come to India, to reduce India’s respect. We see the BBC documentary as an international conspiracy against India.”

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