- NL Sena
The podcast where we discuss the news of the week.
In this episode of NL Hafta, Abhinandan Sekhri, Manisha Pande, Raman Kirpal, and Mehraj D Lone of Newslaundry are joined by Anuradha Bhasin of Kashmir Times.
Abhinandan begins the discussion by asking Anuradha about the significance of the arrest of Davinder Singh, a deputy superintendent of police in Kashmir, along with two militants he was ferrying in his private car. She responds that Singh has a shady record. “Obviously these people are not operating on their own,” she adds, “That there’s somebody patronising them, to which level and how deep does this go, these are very vital questions.”
Abhinandan agrees, “It is not unheard of for governments to use militants or other people, or even the armed forces.”
On whether Singh’s is a case of a cop gone rogue, Raman argues, “If nothing comes out, let’s say in the next two months, three months, then obviously the government has something to hide.”
Mehraj doesn’t buy the argument of the cop gone rogue. It’s preposterous, he says. Pointing out that there’s evidence of Singh enjoying patronage, he adds,
“A person who is admitting in an interview, on record to a journalist, that he tortured people is sent as a peacekeeper.”
Talking about the Indian media’s silence on the matter, Manisha remarks, “I thought it was very fascinating that there was complete silence from this ecosystem for about 24 hours till Sambit Patra gave his press conference blaming the Congress.”
Abhinandan believes that it wasn’t a case of the media ignoring the story, it was them being told not to talk about it.
Discussing India Today’s JNU sting, Abhinandan expresses his discomfort with the news channel’s “monkey balancing” act on the matter. “Dude, one party was trying to break people’s heads with hammers and hiding their faces doing it, the other party was pulling cables and not hiding their faces doing it.”
Mehraj adds that the leftist students were disrupting services which is a legitimate form of protest. Anuradha agrees, saying the whole balancing act was disproportionate.
On the ethics of sting, Raman says, “I always say that a sting can be part of an investigation, but it can’t be an investigation in itself.” Manisha’s concern is with the idea of stinging the lowest common denominator. “I would be happy if you sting the VC, sting the Delhi police guy who was incharge, sting the top ABVP guys.” Mehraj echoes her view, noting the Indian media usually go after small fry.
The panel also discuss the hanging of Nirbhaya’s rapists becoming a campaign issue in Delhi, Bipin Rawat’s remarks about deradicalisation centres, and much more. Tune in!
Produced by Ivneet Kaur, recorded by Anil Kumar, edited by Samrendra K Dash and Harshula Sharma.