While the Samajwadi Party is yet to formally adopt a stance on the BBC documentary, India’s Daughter, party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav’s daughter-in-law Aparna Yadav led a protest to express “outrage” against the BBC on Monday. Aparna said that by airing the documentary — banned by the Indian parliament — the British broadcaster was “raping India”. She also burnt an effigy of the BBC and said it ought to learn from Indian media.
At a press conference, Aparna, who is married to Prateek Yadav, said she has not watched the documentary, but has read enough about it to protest. “Jo BBC kar raha hai, ussey humara country poori tarah se rape ho raha hai. Yahan ki sanskriti, yahan ki sabhyata, unka poori tarah se rape ho raha hai. (What BBC is doing is raping India, its culture and its ethos),” Aparna said, adding that the BBC should have respected the Indian Parliament’s call for a ban.
She added, “The documentary has a recording of rape convict Mukesh Singh, a psychopath, and his two mentally deranged lawyers. We have come here in support of the ban on such a rubbish documentary made by lying to the Indian government in the name of research by the prestigious BBC.”
She said the documentary portrayed a partial image of the country. “The impact of this documentary over our tourism industry and our growth rate is what we are protesting against. It carries the statement of a mad man and to portray that all Indian men are rapists is a bad thing and I boycott it entirely,” she said. “There should be a strict ban on interviews of such psychopaths because their comments can be generalised as the mental framework regarding women in our country.”
“I appreciate the Indian media for how it handled Nirbhaya and other cases. I will organise an international seminar with Indian media professionals on how to handle such sensitive issues and then we’ll call BBC for the same lessons,” she said.
Aparna was surrounded by around 150 women and some men, most of whom had little or no idea about the documentary. The women, many of whom were wearing caps of the Bharatiya Kisan Union, said they had come to protest against the denial of compensation by the Lucknow Development Authority for their land. They added that they had been called there by Amar Singh, a local BKU leader.