Delhi: In an unprecedented attack on a BBC documentary on Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s role in the Gujarat riots, Indian Foreign Minister S Jaishankar said its timing was ‘not coincidental’ at all and was ‘politics in another form’.
In an exclusive interview given to Smita Prakash, editor of India’s news agency ANI, S. Jaishankar pointed to the BBC and said, “Those who do not have the courage to enter the political arena directly, they do politics under the guise of NGOs or media.”
After the first episode of the BBC documentary aired in the UK last month, India’s Ministry of External Affairs dismissed it as a ‘propaganda act’ and ‘indicative of a colonial mentality’. However, the language and manner in which the Foreign Minister himself has now directly attacked the BBC is unprecedented and shows how serious the government is on countering the narratives being peddled from outside the country.
However, Jaishankar did not comment on the Indian Income Tax Department’s search of the BBC’s Delhi and Mumbai offices last week. The matter, however, does not fall directly under his ministry.