BBC claims the series looks at accusations about Modi's attitude towards India's Muslim minority.
The central government has reportedly ordered YouTube and Twitter to remove links of a BBC documentary on the 2002 Gujarat riots and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, several major outlets reported citing anonymous sources on Saturday.
Trinamool Congress MP Derek O'Brien tweeted, “Censorship. Twitter has taken down my tweet of the BBC documentary. It received lakhs of views. The one-hour BBC documentary exposes how PM hates minorities.”
According to NDTV and Indian Express reports, the union information and broadcasting ministry issued orders to take down the links using emergency powers under the Information Technology Rules, 2021.
This comes two days after ministry of external affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi called the documentary a “propaganda piece, designed to push a particular discredited narrative”. He also said that “bias, lack of objectivity, and continuing colonial mindset is blatantly visible”.
The two-part documentary, India: The Modi Question, aired its first episode on Tuesday. According to BBC, Modi has been “dogged by accusations over his attitude to the nation's Muslim minority” and the series looks at the “truth”.
The first episode a team from the UK government conducted an inquiry into the 2002 Gujarat riots and concluded that Modi, who was chief minister at the time, was “directly responsible for a climate of impunity”. According to Scroll, the team said the extent of violence was “much greater than reported” and that its aim was to “purge Muslims from Hindu-dominated areas”.
A day after the MEA’s criticism, the BBC had said that the film was “rigorously researched according to highest editorial standards”. The British broadcaster said that “a wide range of voices, witnesses and experts were approached and we have featured a range of opinions, including responses from people in the BJP”. It said the Indian government refused to respond when reached for comment over issues raised in the series.
On Friday, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak appeared to defend PM Modi while, saying he “doesn’t agree with the characterisation” of his Indian counterpart.
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