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Nationwide protest against the BBC by the Indian Diaspora in the UK

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Press Release | Sunday Jan 29, 2023

Reacting to the continued bias and propaganda against India, Hindus and PM Modi and the latest biased reporting and propaganda-driven documentary by the BBC, the British Indian diaspora organized a nationwide protest against the corporation on Sunday 29th January at 12 noon.

British Indians gathered in large numbers in front of BBC offices in London, Manchester, Birmingham,
Newcastle and Glasgow. The protest was attended by people of various backgrounds including young
children, women, the elderly and people of different religions.

The protest organized by the Indian diaspora across the country at various places on the same day at the same me was supported by many Indian organizations. This shows the concern the community at large feels about the impact of this documentary fueling more communal hatred. Members of various organizations participated in the protest including but not limited to INSIGHT UK, Overseas Friends of BJP (UK), Friends of India Society International UK, National Council of Hindu Temples UK (NCHTUK), Hindu Council UK, Vishwa Hindu Kendra Southall, Hindu Forum of Britain (HFB), REACH UK, and Indian Diaspora UK (IDUK).

Threats caused by this BBC documentary:

The BBC recently telecasted a two-part documentary titled ‘India: The Modi Question” on the 17th and 24th of January 2023. This documentary has been strongly condemned for not meeting the expected standards for editorial impartiality. Contrary to claims by the BBC that the documentary is a rigorously researched piece that examines the 2002 riots and Hindu-Muslim tensions during Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s tenure as the Chief Minister of Gujarat, the contents and timing of the documentary reflect a biased and mala fide intention. The BBC, a repeat offender, has disregarded its own charter and impartiality guidelines multiple mes. It has been invesgated and found guilty of the same by the regulatory body Ofcom.

In the documentary, the BBC tried to rake up the unfortunate incident of the Gujarat riots of 2002 following the burning alive of Hindu pilgrims by an Islamist mob in Gujarat. The BBC conveniently missed highlighting this train incident, the catalyst that started the riots. The riots resulted in the deaths of both Hindus and Muslims, however, the BBC failed to highlight that but projected the riots as a one-sided attack on Muslims.

The BBC has blamed Mr Modi for inaction or delayed action in stopping the riots in Gujarat, the then
Chief Minister of the state. It is worth noting that Mr. Modi had only just assumed (in a matter of
days) the post of the Chief Minister of the state.

These riots happened 20 years ago and many Hindu and Muslim lives were lost and impacted. The riots have been thoroughly investigated and the culprits were punished many years ago. The Apex court of India has already exonerated Mr. Modi of any blame for the riots. Still, the BBC has assembled 20 years of biased reportage, peppered it with outdated condiments and garnished it with lots of misplaced victimhood. The entire documentary is based on hearsay, personal opinions of well-known Modi haters and conjecture.

The provocative and divisive documentary contains no legal credibility and ignores the fact that India is the world’s largest democracy with one of the fastest-growing economies. It also ignores the fact that the country’s Supreme Court, after lengthy investigations and due process, has completely absolved Prime Minister Narendra Modi of all allegations of complicity in the 2002 riots. With this documentary, the BBC has shown its disregard for India’s sovereignty, constitution and democratic institutions.

PM Modi’s government is credited with large-scale social and financial inclusion programmes which
have benefited millions in India irrespective of their religion or gender or any other characteristic.
The BBC failed to analyze and understand the ground reality that under the leadership of PM Modi,
his polical party has consecuvely won two general elecons with a landslide victory i.e an absolute
majority. India is a large country with the world’s second-largest and highly diverse populaon and it
has seen many communal riots.

The BBC failed to balance the documentary with any credible hard evidence other than a report
based on hearsay. It failed to interview Hindu families that were affected by both the Godhra train
burning incident or properly detail the accounts of the hundreds of Hindu families that were killed
when organised Islamists attacked them.

Many Muslims and Hindus have found peace since the
event and enjoyed the development of Gujarat. However, it is highly suspicious that this issue seems
to be raked up by a foreign news service, that too just before the 2024 general election in India and
circulated by various an-India and non-Indian Muslim organisations on social media.

The BBC also failed to balance coverage of Kashmir. Many Muslims supported the changes by the
central government. For example, a Muslim Kashmiri Women’s activist, Syed Tehmeena, approved
the removal of Article 370 as it gives women rights to property.

The BBC did not cover the other side nor show that the changes will allow the creation of more jobs, and investment and will give women rights to land and education in the region. It also did not highlight the seriousness of the Hindu genocide in Kashmir.

The documentary covered cow vigilantes but did not highlight the impact of cow smuggling on
poorer Hindu farmers who rely on cattle stock for their livelihood. When the cow smugglers have
been Muslim and caught, the documentary made it out to be a Hindu vs Muslim issue. Rather than
the fact the cow smuggler had been caught stealing.

The impact of the BBC documentary:

Concerned that this act of the BBC deliberately misinforming its viewers and blaming Hindus could
further worsen relations and disturb peace in the UK’s plural and multicultural society, many
prominent individuals and Hindu organisations in the UK have condemned and questioned the BBC
and called for an independent probe against it for a serious breach of the Royal Charter and its dues
as a broadcaster.

After the organised and recent premeditated attacks on Hindus in Leicester and
Birmingham, the British Indian & Hindu diaspora is more concerned now due to this malicious,
biased propaganda-driven documentary of the BBC resulting in more hatred towards British Indians
and Hindus.

How the diaspora reacted:

The Indian diaspora has started many online peons and campaigns calling for an independent
invesgaon into the BBC over this documentary:

1) More than 22,000 have signed the peon demanding an Independent Invesgaon into the
BBC over the Modi documentary – Peon · Call for an Independent Invesgaon into the
BBC over Modi documentary · Change.org]

2) More than 1,000 people have complained to the BBC and their MPs against this biassed
documentary – hps://insightuk.org/bbc-complaints-step-by-step-guide

3) “BBC is creang a false narrave against the two-mes democracally elected Prime Minister
of the largest democracy in the world. Besides PM Modi was exonerated by the Supreme
Court of India,” writes Lord Rami Ranger – UK peon demands independent probe into BBC
series on Modi – The Economic Times (indiames.com)

4) INSIGHT UK ran a social media campaign exposing the bias in the BBC documentary. One of
the tweets by INSIGHT UK state: I’m an Indian Muslim and I find #BBCDocumentary a hit job
against Modi and India’s rising global profile. An apt analysis on the subject by
@zahacktanvir.
hps://twier.com/INSIGHTUK2/status/1618604453749489668?s=20&t=r3IbOtxo0TUsmuA
we7syqw

5) Hindu Community Organisaons Group of Leicester has wrien to the Labour party
leadership about this biased documentary and statement by Labour MP from Bradford
hps://insightuk.org/hcog-leer-to-keir-starmer

6) MP Bob Blackman called the BBC documentary poorly researched, full of innuendos, and
downplaying vital facts about the Gujarat riots. He added that the documentary aacks PM
Modi, is dismissive of the Supreme Court verdict and may adversely affect India-UK relaons

MP Bob Blackman – BBC Documentary is an aack on PM Narendra Modi – INSIGHT UK

7) “I was shocked by the documentary produced by the BBC implicang the Hon. Prime
Minister of India in the Gujarat riots of 2002 which aired on 17 January 2023” states Lord
Popat in his leer to the BBC Director General – UK’s House of Lords member writes to BBC
not to air 2nd part of series on PM Modi – Oneindia News

8) “This preposterous ill-advised production and airing of a Hindu hate piece could well be the
ammunion thugs need to go out and target Hindus. Does the BBC not have any
responsibility?” quesons the Hindu Forum of Britain in its leer to BBC –
hps://twier.com/hritain/status/1616145033480253443

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