Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Ram Madhav Ji's Interview to Indian Express - Irrational Reporting

A brilliant case of irrational reporting by media


Indian Express has published Ram Madhav Ji's interview with a 'Headline / Top line' that RSS was worried about the charges being levied by the media (rather than the investigating agencies) - there's no such statement made by Ram Madhav ji on those lines infact on the contrary he's clearly mentioned that RSS was not worried, the transcript below clearly shows it.


It clearly shows an attempt by the 'media' to sensationalise statements not even made ! Its time the media acted in the impartial and responsible manner and report statements as made rather than to form their own suitable headlines / toplines for their own benefit. We all respect media freedom but such freedom comes with great responsibility of unbiased reporting and without any vested interests. Hope such irrational reporting does not take place in future !


Below is the transcript of the interview Shri Ram Madhav gave to the Indian Express.

(link also given below)

There are allegations of direct involvement of some individuals affiliated to the RSS in acts of "Hindu terror." Devendra Gupta, vibhag pracharak, was recently arrested; Lokesh Sharma, who is said to be his accomplice, also under arrest; the late Sunil Joshi; Ashok Beri and Ashok Varshney, both RSS office-bearers, have been accused of harbouring Gupta while he was on the run; and Sandeep Dange, still on the run, was a vibhag pracharak.

Of these, only Devendra Gupta was holding a position of responsibility in the RSS at the time of arrest in April 2010. He was vibhag pracharak. No other person who is accused has had any active role in the RSS either at the time of the arrest or when the alleged acts were committed.

Sunil Joshi and Lokesh Sharma had some RSS contact earlier. Joshi was zilla pracharak till 2003. He left the organisation for personal reasons; Sharma was in the organisation as a local karyakarta, not pracharak, for eight months in Deoghar in Jharkhand in 2004. He also left of his own accord. Dange was in the RSS, he also left the organisation on his own in 2006.

Beri and Varshney were only called in for the purpose of seeking information. They are not accused of any terror acts. A pracharak approached them for help, and they helped him not knowing what had transpired earlier. The CBI says Gupta stayed with them. We didn’t know and they didn’t know that Gupta was being chased. Had they known, they would have responded appropriately.

Our position is clear. If there is an investigation, we will cooperate, and the person should step down from his position in the organisation, clear his name and only then come back.

That’s why when Beri and Varshney were contacted by the CBI, they consulted the organisation and the organisation advised them to go and give the information. But there were no charges against them and no interrogation, only information was sought.

Senior RSS leader Indresh Kumar’s name has come up. It has been reported that he was present in the tapes aired as part of a sting operation, in which there is terror talk.

Indresh Kumar was not present in those tapes. There is no talk of the RSS. The only person with a parivar link present in the meeting was BL Sharma ‘Prem’ of the BJP. The meeting was held under the banner of “Abhinav Bharat.” We take strong objection to anyone saying that it is an RSS conspiracy.

There is a person in the tape who claims he carried kerosene to a programme at which the vice-president was present. He is a doctor in Apollo hospital but he has still not been arrested. Why? On the contrary, Indresh Kumar who wasn’t even present is being projected as a mastermind.

What is the RSS’s relationship with radical Hindu organisations like the Sanatan Sanstha in Goa and Abhinav Bharat?

The Sanatan Sanstha is a large organisation in Goa. It has no links with the RSS. It’s an independent spiritual organisation headed by a very respected religious guru Sri Athawaleji. Its name did come up in the NIA’s investigation into the blasts in Goa. We have no contact with the body. Abhinav Bharat is a mystery. We don’t know what it is, who created it, for what purpose. It suddenly came up in 2004-05. In its active members, was an Armyman, Lt Col Shrikant Purohit.

What about Sadhvi Pragya Thakur, arrested for the Malegaon blasts? She was a leading light of the ABVP in Madhya Pradesh.

Pragya’s involvement in Abhinav Bharat comes much later in 2006. But mainly, it was Purohit and Dayanand Pandey. Who are they? We don’t know. But we know that Purohit was in the army. Pragya was in the ABVP, and then became a sanyasin. The only accusation against her is that her motorcycle, which she says she sold to Sunil Joshi, was used in the blast.

But a few days ago the Bombay High Court restored the charges under Maharashtra’s tough anti-terror law, Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA), against her.

The MCOCA court had set aside the invocation of the MCOCA in this case, but the High Court insisted that MCOCA charges remain. That judgement will be challenged. The accused will go to the higher court, the supreme court.

Is the RSS extending legal or other help to the accused in Malegaon or elsewhere?

The accused have lawyers in different places. Devendra Gupta and Lokesh Sharma are fighting the case in Ajmer and Hyderabad. Every accused has the right to legal support. They are getting help from family and well wishers.

But is the RSS involved in that?

The RSS believes that they have a right to proper legal support. But they have themselves made the arrangements, so the situation (of the RSS helping out) does not arise.

There were reports earlier this month of a purge of sorts in the RSS after the controversy. Is there any “rectification” drive?

There is no purge. No one has been removed. We have only relieved Devendra Gupta of his responsibilities.

Some incidents that have happened in 2007-2008 have been attributed to a group of people some of whom have had previous RSS links. Where is the question of rectification and reform? The general secretary of RSS has made it clear: RSS neither supports nor protects people perpetrating such acts...I completely deny this argument that merely because a particular individual is found to be involved in an act, his ideology is to blame.

Yet is the RSS worried about these charges?

We’re not worried for the simple reason that in the history of 85 years, the RSS has seen this kind of vendetta time and again. At the same time, we are conscious of the fact that such propaganda can lead to the RSS image being sullied. We would certainly like to make things clear.

How?

Those who know the RSS closely don’t believe in this propaganda. Those who don’t have proximity to the organisation may get carried away. But I hope the media will do its job without bias. We will place the facts as we know them before the people through our own means.

Have their been internal consultations on how to deal with this challenge — of propaganda, as you put it?

Naturally, when such a vindictive propaganda is unleashed against an organisation like the RSS — which has always stood for national interest — we put our heads together on how to negate this propaganda. How can we keep quiet?

Do the consultations extend to the top of the RSS?

Naturally.

Do they include the BJP?

No, not on these issues.

Can you give a sense of the strategy, the time frame?

When there is a method in the madness to defame the organisation, there needs to be a coherent response. You can call it strategy, or whatever. We will use all democratic options available to an open organisation like the RSS to counter the vendetta. In a democracy, the only option is to go to the people and tell them facts. We will let you know the plan once things get to that stage.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/rss-admits-its-worried-top-brass-in-a-hudd/654435/

No comments:

Post a Comment