BJP govt. should stop attacking the media to distract attention from its failures: INDIA 

Opposition parties condemn the early morning raids on journalists linked to NewsClick

October 03, 2023 03:30 pm | Updated 10:04 pm IST - New Delhi

Security personnel guard during raids by Delhi Police’s special cell on the premises of NewsClick at Saket in New Delhi on October 3, 2023.

Security personnel guard during raids by Delhi Police’s special cell on the premises of NewsClick at Saket in New Delhi on October 3, 2023. | Photo Credit: PTI

Strongly condemning the early morning raids on journalists linked to online news portal NewsClick, the Indian National Developmental, Inclusive Alliance (INDIA) on Tuesday said the BJP government should focus on genuine issues concerning the nation and stop attacking the media to distract attention from its failures.

The BJP government has been deliberately persecuting and suppressing the media by deploying investigative agencies. Such action was taken in the past against the British Broadcasting Corporation, Newslaundry, Dainik Bhaskar, Bharat Samachar, the Kashmir Walla, the Wire, and so on. The raids at the homes of journalists associated with the NewsClick follows this sequence, the INDIA bloc said in a joint statement.

“In the national interest, it would behove the BJP government to focus on genuine issues of concern to the nation and the people, and stop attacking the media to distract attention from its failures,” it said.

Several Opposition parties also separately condemned the Delhi Police action against the journalists.

CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury said laptops and mobile phones of journalists were seized without even explaining the charges against them. The CPI(M) Polit Bureau, in a statement, called for united protest by “all Indian democratic minded patriots” against “such a systematic conspiracy to target, persecute and suppress the media that is meant to be the conscience keeper”. 

Congress spokesperson Pawan Khera said the raids were a “fresh distraction from the explosive findings of caste census in Bihar and the growing demand for caste census across the country”.

“When he faces questions from out of syllabus, he resorts to the only counter he has in his predictable syllabus — DISTRACTION,” Mr. Khera said on social media platform X. 

The Opposition also used the raids to question the government’s democratic credentials. Calling the Delhi Police action a “fishing” expedition, former Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir Mehbooba Mufti in a post on X wrote, “GOI claims India is the mother of democracy & about press freedom abroad yet in the same breath uses state agencies to crackdown on the remaining handful of independent media outlets.” 

Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav said the raids were a sign of the BJP is expecting defeat in the Lok Sabha election in 2024. “This is not a new thing, BJP rulers have always raided honest journalists. But how many crores of rupees are being given to ‘friendly channels’ every month in the name of government publicity?” he said on X.  

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