New Delhi: Arnab Goswami, the founder of Republic TV, resigned from the Editors’ Guild of India, accusing the organisation of hypocrisy with respect to the Palghar incident, where two Hindu Sadhus were mob lynched.
“I have been a member of the Editors’ Guild of India for a long time and I, on live television, resign for its absolute compromise on editorial ethics, for being an organisation for operation only for personal interests. I accuse you Shekhar Gupta of leading the compromise on journalism for not speaking on incidents like this.” – Arnab Goswami.
“”This was not a case of “mistaken identity” and the intentions “were clear,”” Goswami said in his prime time news debate.
“If this had happened in a state run by BJP, and, instead of Hindus, and let me be very direct about it, they were from any minority community, would [actor] Nasseeruddin Shah, Aparna Sen, [historian] Ramchandra Guha, [editor] Siddharth Varadarajan, and the award vapsi gang, would they have gone berserk today?”
“Shekhar Gupta, you hear it from me first. Whatever has been remaining of the credibility of the Editors’ Guild of India has been destroyed by the abject silence on a series of fake news. It has become a self-serving organisation. I have been a member of the Editors’ Guild for a long time. I, hereby, resign for absolute compromise of editorial ethics.”
On April 16, two Sadhu along with their driver were going in a car towards Surat in Gujarat to attend a funeral. Their vehicle was stopped near a village in Palghar. The three were dragged out of their car and beaten to death with sticks by a mob on suspicion that they came to kidnap children so as to use their organs.. It was reportedly done in the presence of police officials at the site. The deceased were identified as Chikne Maharaj Kalpavrukshagiri (70), Sushilgiri Maharaj (35), and their car driver Nilesh Telgade (30).
Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh warned against giving any communal colour to the incident, as claims of involvement Muslims in the incident started spreading on social media. “Those who attacked and who died in the Palghar mob killings are not from different religions,” Deshmukh said.
“I have ordered Maharashtra police and @MahaCyber1 to take action against anyone instigating communal hatred in the society or on social media,” he had said in a tweet.
What is Editor’s Guild of India?
The Editors Guild was founded in 1978 with the twin objectives of protecting press freedom and for raising the standards of editorial leadership of newspapers and magazines.
Eminent editors of the day felt that the lack of an organized forum of editors was one of the reasons for the sustained suppression of press freedom during the Emergency. The Editors Guild took up the issues of abuse of press freedom with the Parliament and Executive, and campaigned hard for restoring the press freedom and other freedoms which had been taken away by amendments to the Constitution, executive orders and judicial pronouncements.