oppn parties Attempts To Muzzle The Media Will Backfire

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  • BJD leader and former Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik said that the criticism of his aide V K Pandian is "regrettable"
  • As more than 20 BJP ministers lost in the recent elections, the new Union cabinet will have many new faces from the party
  • Congress Working committee asks Rahul Gandhi to take up the position of Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha. Gandhi says he will consider the request
  • RBI governor Shaktikanta Das said that gold was shifted to India as the quantum of RBI gold abroad had increased due to recent purchases
  • Delhi HC rules that submitting photographic evidence of adultery will not be enough, they will have to be proved as authentic in the age of deepfakes
  • A four-member panel will review NEET-UG results of 1563 candidates to check if they were given extra marks for exam time loss
  • Mamata Banerjee says her party will not join Modi's oath-taking ceremony. Also says INDIA bloc might stake claim to form government later
  • K C Tyagi of the JD(U) dropped a bombshell when he said that Nitish Kumar was offered the post of prime minister for switching sides. Opposition leaders rubbished the claim
  • This May was India's hottest month in 36 years says IMD
  • T20 WC: India take on Pakistan today. Telecast to begin at 8pm IST
  • T20 WC: Afghanistan stun New Zealand and Bangladesh win against Sri Lanka
  • T20 World Cup: Australia beat England by 36 runs. This spoils England's chances of making the playoffs as they have lost both their matches till now
  • Heat wave continues in the country as monsoon moves slow
  • More than 9000 guests, including leaders from abroad, are expected to attend the swearing-in of PM Modi on Sunday. Security has been beefed up in Delhi
  • Division in Bengal BJP widens as former state president Dilip Ghosh asks whether the state unit wanted veteran leaders to lose in the Lok Sabha elections
Modi allots portfolios, plumps for continuity in core team ////// Allies given middle-ranking ministries /////// J P Nadda gets Health, Shivraj Singh Chouhan Agriculture & Rural Development and Manohar Lal Khattar gets bPower & Urban Development
oppn parties
Attempts To Muzzle The Media Will Backfire

By Sunil Garodia
First publised on 2018-10-12 13:29:54

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator.
It is a matter of grave concern that the government is indulging in vendetta against media houses critical of its policies. The I-T department raid on the home and offices of Raghav Bahl, owner of The Quint and minority shareholder of The News Minute is another instance of the administration trying to browbeat a critic into submission. Before this, NDTV was similarly targeted. These media houses are neither pamphleteers nor are they purveyors of fake news.

This is not to say that media houses are above the law. If any discrepancies are discovered in returns filed or if any wrongdoing is reported, all government departments are free to question them. But raiding the premises where business secrets (media survives on scoops, remember) are stored, that too in the absence of the owner, is not the right way to go about it.

The action must be condemned strongly. The government must desist from undertaking such blatantly questionable decisions. If Raghav Bahl is suspected to have suppressed taxes, send him a notice, or multiple notices, and let him reply. Ask for all relevant documents. If the answers are unsatisfactory and if there is reason to believe that evidence might be destroyed, then and only then should raids be conducted.

But in this case, the premises were raided without telling the taxpayer about the alleged discrepancies or wrongdoings. This is obviously a case of putting pressure on the media so that they turn into yes-men. The government must shed the attitude that no one has the right to criticize it. More than half of India did not vote for the NDA. They got to Delhi just because of the first past the post system. Hence, they cannot suppress the voice of the people or the media.