The Indian government has asked Twitter and YouTube to block links sharing the BBC documentary on Modi, India: The Modi Question. The two-part documentary investigates Modi’s role in the 2002 Gujarat riots that left more than 1,000 people dead, mostly Muslims.
The government criticized the documentary, saying it lacks objectivity and is propaganda. It has also denied allegations that it allowed the riots to occur and rejected a Supreme Court ruling exonerating Modi.
What Is It All About?
A bbc documentary on modi that focuses on India’s prime minister, Narendra Modi, and his actions during deadly sectarian riots in 2002 is stirring up controversy. The government has banned it inside the country, but students and others have pushed back against this move.
On Tuesday, officials raided the offices of the BBC in Delhi and Mumbai, confiscating accounts and documents and threatening to arrest employees. The government accuses the BBC of biased reporting. The raids follow the release of the two-part documentary, titled India: The Modi Question.
The documentary examines a series of allegations surrounding Modi’s actions during the Gujarat riots as chief minister in 2002, which left more than 1,000 people dead and uprooted many others. It cites a British government report that accused him of being directly responsible for the violence, and shows how his policies created an environment of impunity.
Many of the allegations in the documentary are nothing new to those familiar with the events, and have been reported in the media at the time and in many books since. But the documentary is one of the first to put all the facts together in a comprehensive way for an international audience.
As the film draws attention, a growing number of students and activists are organizing screenings in defiance of Indian authorities. They are also urging the US to push for meaningful discussions on human rights in India, particularly around the issue of discrimination against Muslim minority communities.
Despite the controversy, the documentary is getting an enthusiastic reception from audiences outside India. It has been screened in more than 20 countries, including at the UN and in the White House. The US premiere of the documentary coincides with an appearance by Modi in Congress this month.
The government has responded to the documentary with a defamation lawsuit against the BBC, alleging that it has “defamed” India and its institutions, including the judiciary. The suit also claims that the BBC has “imputed malice and dishonesty” against Modi. The court has adjourned the hearing until September 15.
A BBC documentary has caused a ruckus in India by revisiting allegations surrounding PM Narendra Modi’s response to 2002 Gujarat riots while he was chief minister. While Modi has denied involvement, the documentary cites a UK government report that held him responsible for the violence, which left more than 1,000 people – mostly Muslims – dead. The BBC was criticized by the ruling party and rightwing groups for airing the two-part series. In addition, it was banned in India and removed from social media platforms like YouTube. But the broadcaster has defended its decision, calling it “rigorously researched according to the highest editorial standards”.
The first part of the documentary, which aired on January 17, was controversial for its focus on the allegations against Modi. It claims that the Indian leader gave instructions to police officers during the riots, telling them to pull back and tacitly encourage Hindu extremists to attack Muslims. The documentary also quotes former police officers who have testified in court that they received these instructions from Modi.
While the documentary is based on leaked documents, the information it contains has been verified by various experts. However, the Indian government has disputed its findings and accused the BBC of bias and of peddling anti-government propaganda. It has alleged that the BBC was trying to derail bilateral ties between the countries. The government has even gone as far as to conduct a tax raid on the BBC’s Delhi offices.
For a country that is highly sensitive about its image abroad, this has proved to be a thorny issue. It is particularly sensitive because it comes just days before Modi’s state visit to the United States, which will be hosted by President Joe Biden. The documentary also comes after years of local journalism that has investigated the riots. The Modi administration is thin-skinned to criticism and the fact that the BBC’s investigation was so damning has really riled them up.
A number of prominent figures from both sides of the political spectrum have weighed in on the controversy. Conservative MP Bob Blackman called the documentary a hatchet job, while Tory peer Rami Ranger penned a letter to the BBC demanding to know “if your Pakistani-origin staff are behind this nonsense”. The BBC has not responded directly to the accusations but says it has been “thoroughly vetted and reviewed before broadcast.” The BBC is currently considering whether to air part two of the documentary.
Following his re-election in 2019, Narendra Modi has faced accusations that some of his policies have been discriminatory towards India’s Muslim population. This documentary examines the relationship between him and the minority group, focusing on his time as Chief Minister of Gujarat during a period of deadly communal violence in 2002 that left more than 1,000 people dead, including many Muslims. The documentary was aired in the UK but not in India, sparking protests from Modi’s government. They accused the BBC of having a “colonial mindset” and threatened to disrupt U.K.-India ties. Despite this, student groups across the country set up screenings and braved police intervention and violence from rightwing extremists in order to do so. The BBC stands by the documentaries and says it was “rigorously researched according to the highest editorial standards”.
The first episode revisited allegations from two decades ago, when Modi was the Chief Minister of Gujarat, in which 60 Hindu pilgrims were killed after their train carriage was set on fire. The incident sparked a wave of bloody retaliatory violence as Hindu mobs targeted the homes of Muslims in the state. The documentary also revealed for the first time a report by the British Foreign Office that held Modi responsible for a climate of impunity allowing the violence to take place. Former Foreign Secretary Jack Straw was interviewed in the film and said that the claims undermined Modi’s reputation.
In a statement, the Indian government condemned the BBC documentary, stating that it was promoting hatred and regressive ideas. The ministry also urged Twitter to block multiple YouTube videos and tweets that shared links to the documentary, as well as ordering the removal of a number of related accounts. The documentary has been able to remain available on social media platforms in India by using VPNs, though, and one of the students who screened it for the BBC was able to watch it in this way.
The second episode of the series, which aired last night, investigates Modi’s rise to power and the controversial events that have marked his career as an elected leader. It also looks at the tensions between the ruling party and its critics, including those who have accused it of favouring Hindu interests over other minorities. The series concludes with a look at how the Modi administration has tried to tackle these claims and what effect they might have on the future of India.
The two-part BBC documentary ‘India: The Modi Question’ sparked an outrage in India when it accused the prime minister of being involved in anti-Muslim riots that occurred in 2002 while he was the chief minister of Gujarat. This triggered a backlash from the government and even led to a threat of disrupting UK-India ties. The Indian foreign ministry said the BBC’s bias and lack of objectivity are “blatantly visible” and the documentary is a reflection of a continuing colonial mindset.
The BBC’s India: The Modi Question investigates the role of PM Narendra Modi during a three-day period of communal violence that took place in his home state of Gujarat in 2002, killing more than 1,000 people, mostly Muslims. The violence started after a train carrying Hindu pilgrims was bombed by a group of Hindu extremists, leading to riots in which houses and shops were set on fire and people killed. Modi has denied any involvement and a Supreme Court investigation found no evidence of his involvement in the riots.
Since the documentary aired, the Indian government has tried to block it from being viewed in the country and forced social media sites like YouTube and Twitter to take down clips of it using emergency laws. Several rightwing politicians have accused the BBC of having an anti-Modi agenda and even called for it to be banned from operating in the country. Student groups across the country have set up screenings of the film, but they have faced arrest and violence by rightwing groups.
In a series of tweets, the British government responded to India’s threats, calling on both sides to exercise restraint and uphold free speech. They also noted that the BBC is a trusted news source for many of its viewers in India.
Amid the political uproar, a human rights group has launched an appeal to support the BBC and its journalists. They want to raise money to support its editorial work and help ensure that it can continue to provide independent journalism on the most critical issues in the world, including human rights violations in the US and India.
- What is the main focus of the BBC documentary on Modi? The main focus of the BBC documentary on Modi is to provide an in-depth exploration of Narendra Modi’s life, political career, and leadership style. It delves into his rise from a humble background to becoming the Prime Minister of India, examining the impact of his policies and decisions on the nation.
- Does the documentary present a balanced view of Narendra Modi’s tenure? The BBC documentary aims to present a balanced view of Narendra Modi’s tenure as Prime Minister of India. It features a diverse range of perspectives from political analysts, historians, and individuals with various viewpoints on his leadership. However, it is essential for viewers to approach the documentary with an open mind and critically assess the information presented to form their own opinions.