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The Article Vanishes

DNA publishes an article busting 9 myths about Modi. In 24 hours it’s removed from the site. Why?

modi-aricle-img

On April 29, one of the most widely shared news on the Indian Internet scene – pictures of Digvijay Singh romancing a journalist notwithstanding of course – was an article on DNA titled “Mamata Banerjee calls Narendra Modi ‘butcher of Gujarat’; here are 9 myth busters on 2002 post-Godhra riots”. The article, according to the author, “proud Congress supporter” Shehzad Poonawalla, was essentially a nine-point listicle “busting nine myths” about Gujarat “perpetrated by Narendra Modi’s PR machinery”.

The short piece, written in less than an hour according to Poonawala, is based on several findings by independent commissions and newspaper reports – most of them published in the mid-2000s, just after the riots in 2002. In terms of new and fresh facts, there is very little Poonawalla’s article brings to the table. Which is why it’s odd that it gathered as much traction as it did.

But it did.

The story, which was aggressively shared on social media by the usual suspects, however, didn’t survive to see the light of the next day. Clicking on the link of the article now leads to a blank page.

 

Expectedly, India’s paragons of free speech raised a huge hue about the platform where all great minds meet – twitter. It was conspiracy theories galore.

 

Newslaundry got in touch with the involved parties to get their side (whoever was willing to give one that is). In a telephonic interview with Newslaundry, Poonawala said, “Narendra Modi’s PR machinery took the article down since they’re uncomfortable that every point I made was backed with facts.” To Newslaundry’s enquiry if DNA intimated him before taking the article was taken down, he said, “I got in touch with them in the morning but I don’t grudge them since they are obliged to function within certain constraints and limitations. The person from DNA I was coordinating with for the story, did everything within his capacity to keep the article up but it was beyond him.” Poonawala, however, refused to divulge the name of the person he was in touch with from DNA since it would “compromise” him. He did send us an email though, where he gave a detailed version of his side of the story:

Right to Free Speech “butchered” by Team Modi…

Yesterday, I wrote a piece for the DNA (I regularly write for their online portal) called “Between Myths and Truths” that busted 9 myths being perpetrated by Mr Narendra Modi wrt 2002 riots. These 9 myth busters were not my opinions but statements of facts that were culled from institutional records like Supreme Court, NHRC report, etc. (see below) This article was posted at 1pm and within few hours it got over 1000 + shares on facebook, twitter and spread like wild fire, drawing reactions from Modi supporters and his opponents. Even the likes of Sidharth Vardarajan & Shashi Tharoor shared the piece and tweeted about it. DNA, as you can see, itself tweeted about the article three times since it was a Top Story!

 

This morning , without notice, the article was forced to be pulled down. Now if you visit the link http://www.dnaindia.com/node/1983270, it says “The requested page cannot be found”.

I have been told that Narenda Modi’s team was so rattled that they instantly ordered the pulling down of the article. The article for the first time compiled the myth-busting answers to all of Mr Modi’s perpetrated falsehoods on Gujarat 2002 – how he failed to stop the rioting in 2-3 days as is claimed, how he communalised the air with his speeches, how his police acted in a partisan manner, how he applied for a US visa and was rejected one, how his government scuttled the process of law…

All I can say, like I said in my piece, this is the defeat of Truth by Falsehoods and whenever Truth becomes a victim to falsehoods, there is just one, long sigh that reverberates in our collective conscience “Hey Ram”!

Newslaundry’s multiple attempts to get in touch with Kunal Majumdar, Associate Editor (Digital) at Zee Media – who is responsible for DNA’s online content according to his Twitter bio – have proved futile. Majumdar didn’t respond to any of our multiple calls, tweets or email.

The reaction of the third party involved in the episode, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), varied from person to person. Vineet Goenka, the co-convenor of the BJP’s IT Cell, refused to comment on the matter saying that he was not authorised to. He instead directed me to the party’s spokespersons, Nirmala Sitharaman and Meenakshi Lekhi. Sitharaman claimed ignorance and said, “I have come to Hyderabad to cast my vote – I’m not in the know of what transpired. Meenakshi Lekhi, who seems to be busy fire-fighting Modi’s selfie-gaffe, didn’t take our calls.

The BJP though, in spite of all its social media-savviness, still appears to be ignorant of the Internet’s grammar. Anything that goes up on the internet stays on the internet. Any move to muzzle it only does the opposite. Here’s the link to a cached copy of the article, saved for posterity.
Feel free to share it.

 

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  • Narendra

    Do you have anything to backup your case that Modi pulled it down? Otherwise just stop this BS

    • YourDad

      No Modi didn’t. It’s his Chamchas who removed it. Of course they think he is God and not human and fools like you vote for him and comment here.

    • D

      Do you really doubt that the Modi machinery had a hand?

      • irregularexpression

        Do I think God exists? Do I think aliens are real? E. V. I. D. E. N. C. E.

        • Rohan

          In a criminal investigation, one always tries to ascertain suspects based on motives. Who stood to benefit the most if the article was taken down? In spite of all the outrage on twitter on this article being taken down, one cannot deny the fact that its reach was considerably restricted. Since Modi is a direct beneficiary of this act of kindness by DNA, obviously his PR team is a prime suspect.

    • Paresh Rawal

      I am fully confident that Sonia Gandhi, Kejriwal, Amma, Naveen Patnaik, Mamta Banerjee the ISI and the CIA pulled down the article.

      • irregularexpression

        Sarcasm is not a substitute for evidence. May be in your books!

    • PSR N MORE

      DNA saw a dream and pulled it down.. but does not matter as its still available.

  • kartik

    good job newslaundry (y)

  • Atul wassen

    Bull

  • http://mydesidaaru.wordpress.com Desi Daaru

    Sorry to play devil’s advocate, but the Huffington Post also removed an article that named Sonia Gandhi as one of the richest politicians in the world.
    In the exact same way.

    Unless you can get in touch with DNA and wrangle an explanation from them for the withdrawal (Huffingpost said something about not being able to verify facts in that case), it’s irresponsible to point a finger at the BJP ‘for the time being’ as you seem to be doing.

    This is not to say the BJP wasn’t behind it, may very well be the case. But this post is purely speculative at this point.

    Thanks for sharing the article though.

    • PSR N MORE

      You can read the article, here http://web.archive.org/web/20140429220211/http://www.dnaindia.com/analysis/standpoint-mamata-banerjee-calls-narendra-modi-butcher-of-gujarat-here-are-9-mythbusters-on-2002-post-godhra-riots-1983270

      which is the whole point of writing this article.

      But still question remains same, why did BJP get it removed ?

      • irregularexpression

        Where is the evidence that BJP got it removed? Or does speaking from the rear end counts as evidence these days?

        May be Congress got it removed, to make it look like BJP got it removed. Just like Mamata/Yogi Yadav warn that ‘the country will burn’ if Modi becomes PM.

        • PatelRap

          And taking your “logic” a little further , perhaps those corpses in Godhra committed mass suicide, just to give Chairman Modi a bad name.

          • irregularexpression

            It is called Hitchens’ Razor – “What can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence”. May be if you spent more time educating yourself and less time trolling, you would actually have a shot at understanding the ‘logic’!

          • PatelRap

            Your spelling sucks too…

          • insanityunlimited007

            http://www.countercurrents.org/poonawalla010514.htm

            The above link has the article which was removed. Now there are 9 points with evidence – so instead of who removed it…its better to discuss the content.

      • MED

        “Why did the BJP get it removed?”

        “Why did the Congress get it removed?”

        Frankly, to me it matters less if it’s the BJP this time (or it’s the BJP from now onwards if they end up forming the government). It’s the nature of relationship between MSM and politicians that makes it easy for the latter to dictate/ direct the former on what to write, what not to write and how to paint things.

        Again this seems more like something of an institutional issue. And hence the more important question to answer is how free MSM from government control? If not completely, then at least relatively more so?

        • http://mydesidaaru.wordpress.com Desi Daaru

          You’ve hit the nail on the head. The powerful(Congress/BJP/AAP) will always try to manipulate media, that is a constant, even globally. Foolish to assume it will stop.

          The ability of media to resist this pressure is the variable here.

          Increased freedom of expression is not going to be passively given. It needs to be actively taken. In this case I hold the PAPER responsible primarily, for choosing to back down (if that’s what transpired.)

          • MED

            Well, yea… maybe the paper is responsible for choosing to back down. But then again, a government can ensure that that paper/ media outlet loses access and hence loses out on stories.

            How do you fight that? And I don’t think this is particularly a problem with Indian media + politics only. It may very well be a problem throughough the world (i.e. cutting off access being a way to blackmail media). And there are plenty of other legal ways the government/ powerful bureaucrat etc could blackmail a media outlet, no?

          • http://mydesidaaru.wordpress.com Desi Daaru

            I have no idea. As far as I know, this crony journalism is less in the west (I have no clue, just my perception) .The White House holds daily media briefings, and the President directly addresses the nation every week. That’s got to make access less important no?

          • MED

            Heap Big Question.

    • Dr Dobbs

      My contribution:
      ============
      Do we remember Bharkha Dutt vs Chaitanya Kunte ? Remember how Bharkha dutt and NDTV “butchered”, “massacred” free speech? What were the journalists doing back then to save free speech? It should be far more easier for NL to go to its head office and get some facts and present it to its viewers. Hypocrites must be careful of their tainted glass house.

      • http://mydesidaaru.wordpress.com Desi Daaru

        Yeah I was surprised how nobody covered the Huffington Post retraction on Sonia Gandhi. One of the richest politicians in the world, they said! And yet it got ‘buried’.
        At least Huffington Post had a ready explanation, which we’ll have to accept.

        But here the author has decided that BJP buried the story without speaking to either the BJP or the paper itself.

        If he attempted to contact them and failed to do so, he must stick to reporting and not go editorial.I didn’t study journalism but even I can see why mixing facts with a few lines of opinion is not done. If this is the journalistic standard of a ‘watchdog’ website, what’s the point?

        • Satish Shah

          Well this reminds of another article: http://www.firstpost.com/politics/bjps-anti-muslim-ambedkar-pitch-is-a-big-fat-lie-1499723.html

          Another article with no proof just insinuations about “what might have happened”. The tactic now seems to be malign at all costs – proof or no proof.

          The worst part is no one seems to have watched excellent Sanjay Baru’s interview by Madhu Trehan. She clearly pans journalists who write stories without talking to all the sides. Now you would think journos or writers on her own site would be more careful.

          • Nitesh

            nah ,she exempt the likes of Gulel from this criteria.. her friends can do any story without taking all views.

        • insanityunlimited007

          http://www.countercurrents.org/poonawalla010514.htm

          Facts are mentioned – there are 9 points lets see what spin u can give to the above…

      • insanityunlimited007

        I dont understand why modi bhakts bring in example of other wrongs whenever any fault of modi is exposed. If xyz is a criminal or a supppressor of free speech then does it justify the suppression of free speech by MODI ?? If yes then why wa she tweeting about press freedom just a couple of dyas back ?? was he deceiving the nation ?

        By the way the 9 points raised in the article are mentioned in below link…please try to answer those 9 points instead of trying to beat around the bush

        http://www.countercurrents.org/poonawalla010514.htm

    • Sandy

      a bjp supporter talking about irresponsible statements and allegations …LOL

      • http://mydesidaaru.wordpress.com Desi Daaru

        I don’t see what the problem is if I expect a journalist to be more responsible than a politician (of whatever party) with insinuation or allegation. Especially an NL journalist.

    • TPAK

      HP removed the post because, in the post’s own admission, the article was unverified and picked up from an obscure source from the internet. But why let facts get in the way of propaganda?

      • ben

        lol

      • Pavithra

        Well said!

    • Arunabh

      Wrangling out an explanation, I’m sorry to inform you, is not my job. Asking is – and I did that.

      • http://mydesidaaru.wordpress.com Desi Daaru

        Well you didn’t get any answers right?
        So the rational, unbiased assessment in that situation to me would be – we don’t know for sure why the story was withdrawn. While it’s likely the BJP may have played a role, we cannot confirm this.

        But obviously, it’s your prerogative.
        Just that the slant is um, a bit obvious.

    • Jonty

      If conspiracy theory and speculation are the only things that we are going to go by, then I have one more theory. I think this article was taken down by DNA and Poonawala himself in collusion. Poonawala first wrote the article then made sure that DNA took it down and then started blaming that Modi and BJP did it. How about this theory? Would this work? I think if author is speculating that Modi/BJP took it down and already wrote an article on it, why not accept my theory and write another article on it?

      The point is that unless the author has any solid documentary evidence to back up his claim that BJP took it down, I don’t see the need to write this piece of speculation.

    • Rahul D

      Isnt there a difference? This article was based on some facts, and that was what, hearsay?

    • insanityunlimited007

      You should not be sorry ….2 wrongs don’t make right….dont try to deviate from the topic…because sonia gandhis article was removed from huffington post does not answer the question as to WHY DNA removed article exposing modi. It is not speculative at all beacuse shobha de openly raised this issue in news hour with arnab a couple of days back that even some of her articles were being removed. We all know anyone speaking against modi is being thrashed (like aAP) , threatened, bought etc. this is a fact. If you want to claim nothing is happening then u r a MODI-BHAKT period.

  • Abhinav Rai

    Lol Shehzad and his brother Tehseen are the accused in the CWG scam, and they go around preaching to the world. Bahut Krantikari :-)

    And most of the NL writers are “BhadraLok” folks, one can expect what to come from them :-)

  • KARTIK

    Arunabh is rocking NL these day. Good going brother.

  • Dr Dobbs

    The moment one reads reads Myth no. 8 its a no brainier that this article is high quality BS.

    Here is the actual clip : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x5W3RCpOGbQ

    So, NL article is defending lie peddling mercenaries in the name of guarding free speech. I am not surprised that this article borrowed AAP’s shoot and scoot tools to send across an opinion and not a fact.

    On a side note:
    ============
    One thing that must be observed is that NL just like all other media love to promote anti Modi rhetoricto gain viewership. For each anti modi article pro Modi viewers come to defend and anti modi come to applause. Thus NL and MSM win either ways. So in effect NL and MSM are free riders albeit riding on spreading false propaganda on Modi. I hope the comments section too lasts just like the articles .. on the “Internet”.

    • JournoJr

      Well, myth number 8 is probably incorrect about Rajdharma in the article as you point out. However, it is probably correct about Vajpayee not being happy with the state government.

      Some lines from that BBC article:

      “Government officials, political leaders, need to respond to the task. The constitution guarantees equal rights for all,” he said.

      AND …

      “The duty of our government is to protect the property, life and honour of everybody… there is no scope for discrimination,” he said in an apparent reference to allegations that local officials had turned a blind eye to the killings.

      Again – I don’t know what the whole context of these statements is – that might change the over all meaning. But by the look of it, Modi is not in the clear on this – though he cannot be accused either.

      • Dr Dobbs

        Happy that you at-least said ‘myth number 8 is probably incorrect’ after seeing a factual video clip.

        Well I agree that Vajpayee was unhappy but so was the chief minister Narendra Modi. When 2002 happened, he had an experience of 3 months as a chief ministers. Take a look at the below video, its a message from Modi to “citizens” of Gujarat during the riot period. The message is in Gujarati and has English subtitles.

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k9Kp3elBEw8

  • Mr. Blonde

    Modi will take 1-2 years to “pretend to understand” that free speech doesn’t mean anarchy .. & then his PMO will condemn articles and reports instead of reacting to them.
    This has been standard practice in Gujarat. People speaking against the government are harassed regularly.

  • Paresh Rawal

    Thank you Anurabh Saikia.

  • Tabish

    Good Job Newslaundry #Respect for freedom of speech.

  • chamanjinga

    As Madhu T says, did you get other side of the story? http://archive.indianexpress.com/news/kalmadi-s-men/1200444 here are the credentials of poonawalas..Madhu T hates angrezo ki ungli karne ki aadat, but seems she’s now fan of it. AAP log desh ko bacha rahe ho sach mein, lekin kis desh ko vo pls bataiye?

    • Arunabh

      Yes, we approached all involved parties and gave them a chance to respond. Maybe, you didn’t read the article.

      • Seshu

        BJP did not respond , so you conclude? what are you? Journalist or a Judge??

        • irregularexpression

          Well, “Arnab” and “Arunabh” do sound similar! :P

  • madhok

    in how much time will NL be declared as a naxalite pakistani agent ?
    any guesses

    • irregularexpression

      NL is AAP ka NDTV. Nothing more to say! :P

      • Paresh Rawal

        Now now, Anand Ranganathan still works for NL.

  • Sateesh Shetty

    After reading this article I realize how the flimsy case against Modi for 2002 riots must have been built up. All propaganda but no proof that can stand in a court of law. Anything to slander Modi seems to be the game of the ‘fascist leftist’ and this is running since 2002. Btw this Tehseen Poonawalla is the same guy who is dating Monica Vadra who is the cousin of Robert Vadra who is husband of Priyanka (Bianca) Vadra. Such is this incestous relationship between media & corrupt CONg is that now it has even reached their bed. Digvijay & Amrita Rai (ex NDTV & now DD) is a case in point. Media seems to have become a harem for Khoongressis. I am so proud that I corrected the mistake that I made in 2004 & 2009 and voted for BJP & Modi. Feels like a burden off my head. Peace.

    • Manoj

      NDTV seems to be like JNU – a factory for generating malcontents

  • http://lemonparty.org just_some_guy

    Arunabh, I love people like you, everywhere you look, you see a conspiracy except when there is kejriwal or AAPtards involved.. These “articles” make for good comedy, thanks for keeping us laughing :)

    • Arunabh

      You’re welcome. Do read whenever you feel like having a laugh. :)

      • http://lemonparty.org just_some_guy

        In the spirit of comedy, I had a serious doubt. Now that you have spent time with spamnath bharti and he probably has your email. Dont you think, it is kind of ironic that most of the spam you get is from rich african princes and diplomats in a pinch. Are you going to ask him to exchange her friends, the african princes and diplomats for the women he publicly humiliated so that they can spread their riches trapped in swiss banks and turn khirkee extension upscale?

        • Arunabh

          Maybe I would just ask him for some contacts for good green (since I can’t afford black) so that I can make you laugh even harder.

          • http://lemonparty.org just_some_guy

            I see, so he was actually mad at them coz his buddies dint scire some good green at a bargain eh.

            Btw, gimme some inside scoop bro, what are kejri’s plans for spamnath if he comes to power? Is spamnath going to be the official envoy to african union or minister of women empowerment?

  • MED

    Anurabh Saikia: Do you agree with Poonawalla that this is an act of butchery of Mr. Poonawalla’s free speech?

    Does NL believe so?

    • Paresh Rawal

      Do you believe so?

      • MED

        Nope.

        • Paresh Rawal

          You don’t think removing his article against his will is an attack on his freedom to express?

          • MED

            No. Because the same dude can open a blog and write about the same stuff there.

            The only thing is that he can complain of DNA having taken back the platform they initially provided him so as to enable him to get his views out to so many people. And THAT doesn’t mean that his free speech as been violated.

            Almost the same thing holds true for Madhu Kishwar as well (if you read the article ‘Why Kishwar Got it Right’).

          • Paresh Rawal

            Slightly off topic, but what do you think about Swamy’s article being rescinded by DNA?

          • MED

            Well, I’m against censorship. As much as I dislike Swamy’s article I don’t think he ought to be censored for these views of his.

            But what, specifically do I think of his DNA article being rescinded?

            Actually you’re the one who just informed me of that. I didn’t notice it before. Now that I found out about it… I dunno what to think. I dunno what reason I can assign to DNA for having to remove it from *their* page – everybody already knows what he’s said and how he was kicked out of his visiting-faculty position at Harvard for it.

            Dunno. Why? What do you think?

  • Kshitij Maheshwari ‘Jaithelia’

    The last lines are objectionable in the light of the fact that you have absolutely no idea as to who was behind it.. And this is a very poorly written article… All that old Drama.. No one would care to pull it down… or do something which will give the opponents another ground for bla bla….

  • Haunty Leo

    Any thing that is pointed out against the BJP and it’s psychological and physical warfare on the nation in these elections would immediately attract the anger of the internet modi maniacs, who do not fail to call you various derogatory names. I am 100% sure that this nation and the educated class has been successfully blinded and hypnotized by the 5000 crore advertising and marketing money spent by the BJP. If they find a small clue that their money spend on advertisement is not getting successful on some class of people, the party does not fail to hire hooligans to physically attack, intimidate and silent those dissent voices. If this is the kind of government we are going to get, I am fairly certain that India stands in the same position Germany stood before Hitler took over. I also do not understand the difference between jihad and the communal violence that the BJP and VHP member consistently involve in, for the sake of a temple in Ayodhya. Almost all the religious riots in this country have their roots firmly placed in Ram Janmabhoomi and originate mainly from Gujarat, UP, Maharashtra and MP. Why should the rest of India face the consequences of actions initiated by some maniacs from these states? Why can’t the supreme court of India declare a ban on the destruction of any religious, historic and colonial architecture that exists in our country even before 15th August 1947, declaring them as the historical souvenirs of colonialism and invasion.

    • Guest

      Yes.. very true.. But I guess you should read “Indian Controversies” by Arun Shourie to get answer to the question – “Why should the rest of India face the consequences of actions initiated by some maniacs from these states?” I know Arun Shourie got a RS ticket from BJP, but I hope u dont doubt his credibility. I am not asking you to fully comply with what he says, but he writes about what “MAY” lead to the destruction of the “structure” due to then prevailing fears in of a section society (he wrote & published it before Dec 1992), and even if u dont agree to what he writes in that book – there are “educated idiots” like me who feel that few very non communal arguments to be true.

      I feel the “root” is not Ram Janma Bhoomi – its far more complex – I don’t want to blame any party or “states” for what is happening or has happened before. And what should be order of supreme court – for all illegal destruction of religious structures – which are now replaced by religious structure of other religion – after freedom?

      And regarding “rest of India” – I hope you understand that it is not a “few state issue” – its about secularism in India – the real debate lies in its definition followed by each national party.

      And if u think ” I am 100% sure that this nation and the educated class has been successfully blinded and hypnotized by the 5000 crore ” – I hope you are planning to leave the country – why would anyone live in a country full of educated fools? right?

  • Subodh

    This is an old trick from the dirty trick department of congress..

    Put something on web that is anti-Modi, remove it and then blame it on BJP threat/pressure.

    There are a million such articles all over the internet. But Modi’s team was so rattled by this one hastily written article that they threatened DNA management to remove it knowing very well that censorship is impossible on internet, that articles can be extracted from web cache and replicated on a million blogs and that any attempt will backfire badly..hahahaha.

  • bharatpremi

    I checked the archive page. There is nothing new.

    I noticed in IE article and elsewhere. once the discussion picks up, same persons (here pooja adn hetal, different names) come and paste 10/20 comments. Most of them are same things they would have posted elsewhere.
    Modi Bhakts are accused of trolling. I see trolling by the anti-midi industry (yes it is an industry too many people will be unemployed with out modi) big time

  • cvguy

    Isn’t this Poonawala the same guy who’s going around with a Vadra sibling?

  • Liberal_Capitalist

    For all those gung ho about jumping on the, attack on free speech, bandwagon. Allow, xkcd to explain the difference between people not wanting to hear your rants and an attack on free speech.

    xkcd.com/1357/

    • http://lemonparty.org just_some_guy

      Lol, arunabh bro, padhlo padhlo. Difference between right to free speech and DNA simply not wanting to host Shahzaad’s BS on their site.

      You didnt answer me, spamnath for envoy to AU or Women empowerment ministry?

    • Rahul D

      And, if 20 loud and vocal listeners force out speakers who had 200 silent ready listeners?

      • Liberal_Capitalist

        Then it is the responsibility of those 200 silent listeners to grow a spine or be fine with 20 loud ones ejecting the speaker. Right to free speech is not just a right that is given to you by the government, the right is something one should strive for in ones personal capacity to ensure the moderate majority doesnt get muzzled out in the fight of aap, bjp & congress extremists.

        • Rahul D

          Agreed

          • Liberal_Capitalist

            Thank You!
            Have a good evening ahead :)

  • Praveen

    Elementary mistake, Arunabh. You have not got a reaction from BJP or from Majumdar from DNA but seem to suggest that the BJP was behind it. There is also a sly suggestion of BJP muzzling speech( a word generally used with a strongly negative connotation of silencing press) whereas there is absolutely no evidence for that. I know that I should stop reading your articles from now.

    A note ( and probably a learning point ) for newslaundry. Arunabh seems to be a budding Barkha, but not as intelligent. I read his previous article about Somnath Bharti being assualted. Coming from a trusted source like Newslaundry, I believed the contents of the article fully. Now I read this article where for reason stated above and as others have noted, he seems to have taken a anti-BJP stance whereas the facts ( as stated in the article at least) do not suggest so. I realise now that his view might have been jaundiced while writing the Bharti article as well. He states in that article that Bharti said something he “didnt quite catch”. I feel now that this was probably an intelligent way to portray Bharti as blameless and put the onus completely on the BJP guy.

    It is good that I realised about this author soon. I am older now and experience has taught me to question every story media puts out. But this was not the case 10-12 years ago when the Barkha and the Rajdeeps of the world covered Gujarat and Modi repeatedly with their jaundiced view and we lapped it up as the gospel truth. It did take some time for us to realise their bias and now feeling cheated, we outrage about them and their parent organisations NDTV and CNN IBN.

    I just hope, newslaundry gets rid of this guy Arunabh if it wants to continue as a credible unbiased source of news. Or else, be ready for the type of response, NDTV got during the Facebook townhall fiasco.

  • Namopm

    Another backward looking article. People are bored of this now. Both 2002 and BJP bashing are passe

  • vijay c s

    After great articles from Varanasi, this is very poor work by Mr Saikia.

  • WEAREBHARTIYA

    A: Arre yar wo Digvijay Ka bohot chal raha hai twitter pe
    B: Abhi fix karta hu….
    B: ( Writes an Article posts it on DNA)
    B: Arre bhai wo artical nikal dena jara (to news trader) … It has usual Modi rants….
    (Article Removed)
    B:( Blames Modi’s PR agency for doing so )
    If they can edit the potion on DD interview Where modi says Priyanka is like my daughter… they can easily make this happen

  • Alok
  • ben

    how about this?

  • sunny

    speaking about free speech, I would like to ask Saikia, a distinguished AAPtard, whether one can be critical about AAP on its web page in the section “POL KHOL”!!! and this guy claims to be the supporter of free speech!!!

  • Deepak

    The author like the owner of this site seems to be a grade A AAPtard. Assuming for a moment that BJP asked DNA to take down the article, why the hell did DNA oblige? That should be the focus of the story!! But of course, formula of NL and other paid media is clear – share quotes by eNREGA trolls, quotes by CON party members and attack Modi. The truth and honest journalism matters the least to the jurassic journalists who have no ideaof people’s pulse.

  • Nikhilesh Joshi

    what is point in publishing old articles. By the way some of the point made are factually wrong.

  • raul

    I was curious while reading the article that what will be there in link …. It was the same 2002 story ..provided with proof from another stories ….. in my point of view the story shared was not important but why that was removed and who removed that discovery is good to know….. As we know modi did that in 2002 ..blah blah …listening the same from last 12 years

    • YogyKS

      So no respect for human life n dignity? Is it really blah blah blah….if its ur family? Your mother, sister or wife?

  • Contrarian

    the Human rights commission is a bunch of chamchas of the congerss. How can you have anyfaith if Justice Balakrishnan, whose history is known to all. the authour’s brain is dead on one side.

  • A

    From Shehzaad Poonawala (DNA)

    For those who have developed “selective and motivated” amnesia about the truths of 2002 riots in Gujarat and are suddenly buying into the myths being perpetrated by Narendra Modi’s PR machinery, here are a few myth-busters to refresh your memory and perhaps your conscience

    Myth no 1: Post-Godhra violence was brought under control within 2-3 days by Narendra Modi’s government

    Truth: “The violence in the state, which was initially claimed to have been brought under control in seventy two hours, persisted in varying degree for over two months, the toll in death and destruction rising with the passage of time.”

    Source: Final Order of the National human Rights Commission chaired by the very respected Justice JS Verma.

    Myth no 2: Gujarat Police acted fairly by taking action against rioters from every side

    Truth: “We women thought of going to police and telling the police as in the presence of police, the houses of Muslims were burnt, but the police told us ‘to go inside, it is doom’s day for Muslims”

    Source: PW219 testimony which was admitted as part of Naroda Patya judgment that led to conviction of Mayaben Kodnani, Narendra Modi’s cabinet minister who led murderous mobs during 2002 riots.

    Myth no 3: No conspiracy by the Gujarat government; post-Godhra violence was a spontaneous reaction

    Truth: “A key state minister is reported to have taken over a police control room in Ahmedabad on the first day of the carnage, issuing directions not to rescue Muslims in danger of being killed.”

    “Voter lists were also reportedly used to identify and target Muslim community members”

    Source: Report of Human Rights Watch, April 2002, Vol. 14, No. 3(C). A

    Myth no 4: Modi allowed a fair prosecution of those accused in rioting and hence even his cabinet colleague Mayaben Kodnani was convicted

    Truth: “The modern day ‘Neros’ were looking elsewhere when Best Bakery and innocent children and helpless women were burning, and were probably deliberating how the perpetrators of the crime can be saved or protected.”

    “Law and justice become flies in the hands of these “wanton boys”. When fences start to swallow the crops, no scope will be left for survival of law and order or truth and justice. Public order as well as public interest become martyrs and monuments.”

    “From the facts stated above, it appears that accused wants to frustrate the prosecution by unjustified means and it appears that by one way or the other the Addl. Sessions Judge as well as the APP (Shri Raghuvir Pandya, the public prosecutor in this case at the time was a member of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and contested elections from Ward 20, Vadodara in the 1996 Corporation Elections on a BJP ticket!) have not taken any interest in discharge of their duties.”

    Source: Supreme Court in Zahira Habibulla H Sheikh And Anr vs State Of Gujarat And Ors on 12 April, 2004 CASE NO.: Appeal (crl.) 446-449 of 2004.

    Myth no 5: Narendra Modi never justified post-Godhra killings

    Truth: “Responding to queries regarding various statements attributed to him by the media, Mr Modi denied citing Newton’s law. Nor had he spoken of “action-reaction”; he had wanted neither the action (at Godhra) nor the subsequent reaction. When we cited footage in Zee to the contrary (Annexure 4A), there was no reaction from Mr Modi”

    Source: Editors Guild Fact Finding Mission Report dated 2002.

    Myth no 6: Narendra Modi speaks only about development in his speeches. Even after 2002 riots, his speeches were never laced with communal poison

    Truth: Narendra Modi’s reported speech: “For several months, the opposition has been after me to resign. When I did, they did not know what to do and started running to Delhi to seek Madam’s help. They realised that James Michael Lyngdoh, the Election Commissioner of India, is their only saviour.Some journalists asked me recently, ”Has James Michael Lyngdoh come from Italy?” I said I don’t have his janam patri, I will have to ask Rajiv Gandhi. Then the journalists said, ”Do they meet in church?”. I replied, ”Maybe they do.” James Michael Lyngdoh came and visited Ahmedabad and Vadodara. And then he used asabhya basha (indecent language) with the officials. Gujaratis can never use such language because our rich cultural heritage does not permit it. Then he gave a fatwa ordering that the elections can’t be held. I want to ask him: he has come to this conclusion after meeting only members of the minority community. Are only minority community members citizens of India? Are majority community members not citizens of this country? Is the constitutional body meant only for the minority community? Did he ever bother to meet the relatives of those killed in the Godhra carnage? Why didn’t he meet them? Why didn’t he ask them whether the situation was conducive for polls? Why? James Michael Lyngdoh ( says it slowly with emphasis on Michael), the people of Gujarat are posing a question to you.”

    Source: Reported speech of Narendra Modi, September 30, 2002.

    Myth no 7: Narendra Modi never applied for a US Visa (when it came to light that he was denied one)

    Truth: “The Chief Minister of Gujarat state, Mr. Narendra Modi, applied for a diplomatic visa to visit the United States. On March 18, 2005, the United States Department of State denied Mr. Modi this visa under section 214 (b) of the Immigration and Nationality Act because he was not coming for a purpose that qualified for a diplomatic visa. Modi’s existing tourist/business visa was also revoked under section 212 (a) (2) (g) of the Immigration and Nationality Act. Section 212 (a) (2) (g) makes any foreign government official who “was responsible for or directly carried out, at any time, particularly severe violations of religious freedom” ineligible for a visa to the United States. The Ministry of External Affairs requested that the Department of State review the decision to revoke his tourist/business visa. Upon review, the State Department re-affirmed the original decision.” This decision applies to Narendra Modi only. It is based on the fact that, as head of the State government in Gujarat between February 2002 and May 2002, he was responsible for the performance of state institutions at that time. The State Department’s detailed views on this matter are included in its annual Country Reports on Human Rights Practices and the International Religious Freedom Report. Both reports document the violence in Gujarat from February 2002 to May 2002 and cite the Indian National Human Rights Commission report, which states there was “a comprehensive failure on the part of the state government to control the persistent violation of rights of life, liberty, equality, and dignity of the people of the state.”

    Source: Statement by David C. Mulford, US Ambassador to India, March 21, 2005.

    Myth no 8: Vajpayee never asked Modi to observe “Rajdharma”, did not rap him for 2002 riots

    Truth: “In comments which appeared to back criticism of the state authorities, Mr Vajpayee said he would speak to political leaders about allegations that they had failed to do their job. “Government officials, political leaders, need to respond to the task. The constitution guarantees equal rights for all,” he said.The state government is controlled by the BJP, and the Chief Minister, Narendra Modi, has come in for particular attack over the way the authorities reacted to the violence. At the Shah Alam camp in Gujarat’s commercial capital, Ahmedabad, Mr Vajpayee said that the Godhra attack was “condemnable” but what followed was “madness”. “The answer to madness is not madness,” he said in an emotional speech.”The duty of our government is to protect the property, life and honour of everybody… there is no scope for discrimination,” he said in an apparent reference to allegations that local officials had turned a blind eye to the killings.”

    Source: Vajpayee says riots “shameful” – BBC News report April 4th 2002.

    Myth no 9: It’s not sheer opportunism that well-known Modi-baiters like Smriti Irani, have today become his cheerleaders

    Truth: “Smriti Irani who unsuccessfully contested from Delhi’s Muslim-dominated Chandni Chowk constituency in the April-May parliamentary elections, blamed Modi for BJP’s recent electoral reverses. “Whenever people mention Gujarat they only talk about the riots and try to corner the Gujaratis on the issue. So, in order to maintain the respect that I have for Atalji and the BJP, I won’t hesitate to take this step( of going on a fast to seek Modi’s removal) ,” she said.”

    Source: Times of India report dated December 12, 2004.

    These myth-busters took me just one hour to compile. So it’s quite surprising that none of the stalwarts who interviewed Modi, (some of whom saw the events of 2002 unfold in front of their very own eyes), never counter-questioned him further and exposed the glaring gaps in his “rebuffed” narrative. Much like Smriti Irani, I guess, each night they must be saying to them, Hey Ram…

  • SHENOYBV

    Poonawala has prematurely begun basking in the glow of martyrdom. If, as he says, it was all culled from pre-existing reports and records, what big myth-busting has he done? n any case, Modi has also lived though twelve years of persecution and trial though media, including the “myth-busting” nine points of Poonawala. So, why this breast beating and internet howling now?

  • YogyKS

    Do people wish to deny, forget or reject all riots taken place on this land? Cant v come together to press for ALL the riots to b investigated n b punished. All victims must get justice n effective compensation from guilty n the tax payers of this country.

  • Vimal

    Sonia Gandhi’s cervical cancer has been taken off the media completely. There was only one newspaper which published that it was cervical cancer along with the name of the hospital she was in. Sonia’s machinery got it removed because cervical cancer can only be caused due to HPV infection, which is an STD. Check out the facts for yourself.

  • Sukumar KS

    This fraud Congress delivery boys Poonawallahs might have bribed junior level staffers in DNA (ma be a few pegs only) to push their bullshit writings and Management of DNA found the fraud and removed it…i am sure…it was a ghost written piece by some other sickular jounro and he have no courage and used the name of illiterate Poonewallahs…

  • Dipankar Sharma

    Red Saree… Rings some bell.. Freedom Of Speech, my foot…..

    Please ask Shehzad Poonawala, Brother of Tehseen Poonawala (Accused in CWG) to not jump the gun… We have seen many such articles (NDTV, FIRSTPOST, TEHELKA & CNN) so he can show his loyalty to the Family using some other Family Friendly News Posts…

  • RajeevS

    Poonawala is dumbed down version of Sanjay Jha..Need I say more.

  • Jitesh

    wanted to share the complete clip of Mr. Vajpayee stating in the end that he is sure that Modi is doing the right thing! glad to know that a lot of newslaundry followers are aware of it….unfortunately, people will only believe what the mainstream media will show…..! also newslaundry…..the moment you get into some bashing business of whichever party, you lose perspective of the truth….hope everyone seen the last 5 seconds of this video which has been conveniently deleted by the mainstream media channels…..https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x5W3RCpOGbQ&feature=youtu.be&t=1m8s

  • Pavithra

    Nice!! Good job!

    As we all know BJP has the best IT/Social Media cell in India – if not for this unit’s 24/7 hard-work, BJP/Modi will not be where they are today!! Hey after all, **Modi took a prosperous state and just maintained the glow**!! But he is being portrayed as the savior-of-sorts!! So yes, kudos to the cell/unit!! As they say, *even the best ones fall sometimes*!!

    Oh I almost forgot: For BJP, the laws of Internet are merely a suggestion! LOL………..

  • Brijesh Gupta

    Can someone please write something similar about Godhra as well…

  • VT

    Can someone point out where I can find the Annexure 4A, referred to in the Editors Guild Fact Finding Mission Report dated 2002, in the myth no. 5? Also, under myth no 6 – I did not understand the communal poison being alleged in Modi’s statement on Mr Lyngdoh (the statement is condemnable since EC is a constitutional authority, but didn’t get the communal part). For me, these are 2 serious allegations against Modi at an individual level, rest are related to his government, his ministers etc which Modi was morally responsible for, but their actions do not mean Modi was personally involved. Help, anyone?

  • http://dimensionstoindia.blogspot.in/ Harshil Shah

    Ha!! The arrogant CWG boys at it again. God I love these Congress folks, such masterpieces all from their Supreme Leader Sri Rahul Gandhi to Sanjay Jha and Poonawala. Makes my day, their speeches.

  • http://dimensionstoindia.blogspot.in/ Harshil Shah

    Read all ‘facts’, even visited the links (some did not open) . The first or the second file is a 1969 page long verdict.
    Cherry picking selective phrases to suit you does not amount to research or a true representation of facts.

  • insanityunlimited007

    Friends instead of discussing who removed the article lets discuss what was the content of the article – the article is still available on the following link:

    http://www.countercurrents.org/poonawalla010514.htm

  • insanityunlimited007

    Myth no. 4 : Modi allowed a fair prosecution of those accused in rioting and hence even his cabinet colleague Mayaben Kodnani was convicted…

    Truth : “The modern day ‘Neros’ were looking elsewhere when Best Bakery and innocent children and helpless women were burning, and were probably deliberating how the perpetrators of the crime can be saved or protected.”
    “Law and justice become flies in the hands of these “wanton boys”. When fences start to swallow the crops, no scope will be left for survival of law and order or truth and justice. Public order as well as public interest become martyrs and monuments.”

    “From the facts stated above, it appears that accused wants to frustrate the prosecution by unjustified means and it appears that by one way or the other the Addl. Sessions Judge as well as the APP (Shri Raghuvir Pandya, the public prosecutor in this case at the time was a member of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and contested elections from Ward 20, Vadodara in the 1996 Corporation Elections on a BJP ticket!) have not taken any interest in discharge of their duties.” –

    Source: Supreme Court in Zahira Habibulla H Sheikh And Anr vs State Of Gujarat And Ors on 12 April, 2004 CASE NO.: Appeal (crl.) 446-449 of 2004 . Available Here:http://indiankanoon.org/doc/105430/

  • LOGICAL
  • samir

    The same old problem with most of us. If DNA, they dig-out H-Post.. riots for riots, barbs for barbs.NO more Tit-for-Tat, friends. Everyone has the right to know what our leaders did in their past. Let us admit, we are uncompromising with our leanings, however horrendous and bizarre the object/person we affiliate to are. If anyone has a problem with the article they should present their view consequently. The gagging of media to serve their gluttony augurs nothing but DANGER. Some literate friends commented as if to defend the indefensible. The undermining of institutions is in the life-breath of Indian polity, which cannot be the fashion for too long.

  • nitz19arg

    Recent exapmple of curbing of free speech happened when Aamir Khan filed a defamation case against blogger Ajit Vadakayil for saying derogatory things about his show Satyamev Jayate.
    Though the article is still not removed from the blog which has a huge following.

    Can NL please do some research on this interesting topic?

  • nitz19arg

    The points asked offer nothing new info to the public domain.

    She is just asking some points based on statements/facts appearing in blogs and newspapers.

    If these raised points are indeed true, why was Congress and the commissions under its controls like SIT and CBI unable to convict him ???
    After all, if he is guilty, wouldn’t it be easy for SC to convict him?

    Its a vain attempt and DNA realized this.

    Anyway, here is another blog which offers other side of the story, many questions are clearly answered here.:

    http://janamejayan.wordpress.com/2011/04/15/facts-speak-for-themselves-godhra-and-after-a-field-study/

    • nitz19arg

      BTW, this article is written by Madhu Kishwar.

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