MB Rajesh, the CPM Lok Sabha MP from Palakkad, Kerala hit out at journalist Arnab Goswami in an open letter after a boisterous news debate on the latter’s television channel Republic TV. In the letter, that has been posted and shared widely on Facebook, Rajesh called Goswami ‘the most unethical journalist I have ever seen’ and a ‘coward.’ He lambasted the journalist for his ‘uncivilized outbursts’ and criticised him for lacking integrity, confidence and credibility as a news anchor.
Rajesh had participated in a news debate on May 26, the topic of which, he wrote, was changed at the last minute when he came on-air. He was initially called for a discussion on the three years of the Narendra Modi government. However, on-air, he was asked to defend the remarks that were made by CPM state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan on the army.
“I could have boycotted the show at that moment but I chose to remain because in my absence you may repeatedly scream the lie that I ran away from the show. I wanted to avoid such a situation and tried to present my views on the fabricated story,” wrote Rajesh. He wrote that despite Goswami’s outbursts and interruptions, he tried to say that Balakrishnan’s remarks were not against the army but on the ‘atrocities committed in the name of AFSPA.’
“It was evident from your substandard and abusive remarks against the CPI(M) that your sense of history is poorer than that of a primary school child. Your teacher of history in school would have been much ashamed to see the shameless and naive expression of your ignorance on history,” the Left MP continued.
Rajesh then went on to state that he is the ‘proud son’ of a man who served in the army for a long time, even fighting in the 1971 war. He said he was born in a military hospital and that his childhood was spent in an army environment.
“As the ward of a veteran, I’ve also partaken in the sacrificial living of an army family, like several others. Now, tell me, apart from your highly hypocritic and extremely dramatic expressions in the name of army, only to raise ratings, what have you genuinely done for our army?” he wrote.
The Facebook post has generated so much interest that people have been asking for a Malayalam version as well. The post at last count was shared more than 6000 times.
Goswami, who was formerly the editor-in-chief of Times Now channel, launched Republic earlier in May and has generated controversy since then. The channel, backed by NDA Kerala vice-chairman Rajeev Chandrasekhar, has been slapped with a civil defamation suit by Congress MP Shashi Tharoor for allegedly making defamatory remarks against him during coverage of the death of his wife Sunanda Pushkar. Tharoor’s lawyer Salman Khurshid said the suit sought to restrain the channel and Goswami from making remarks until the police investigation into the death of Tharoor’s wife was complete.
Read Rajesh’s full post below.