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Friday, June 2, 2023

Analyzing media’s Hinduphobia seen in its coverage of 2020 anti-Hindu Delhi riots

The 2020 anti-Hindu Delhi riots brought out the ugly face of Islamism. These riots saw an extensive loss of life and property including the murder of Delhi policeman Ratanlal and IB (Intelligence Bureau) officer Ankit Sharma. There is no doubt that the Delhi riots were a direct result of the protests that followed the passage of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) which provided citizenship to a minuscule number of minorities from neighboring Islamic nations and languishing in Bharat for decades.

What was evident, however, was the biased, one-sided narrative peddled by media houses where they sought to shift the blame onto Hindus instead of calling out the rabid Islamic Jihadists who were responsible for the entire episode, thereby displaying their Hinduphobia and anti-Hindu bias once again.

We analyzed front-page reports of three major publications between 24th and 28th February 2020 (Delhi editions) to see how fair they have been in their coverage of these riots.

Publications and their background

Times of India (TOI) – most often than not runs Hinduphobic articles. The Jains who own this publication are known as Congress and Nehru-Gandhi family loyalists.

Hindustan Times (HT) – This is another anti-Hindu publication that identifies victims or perpetrators of crimes depending on their religion. It has Barkha Dutt and Karan Thapar as writers which speaks a lot about the kind of stance they are likely to take on any issue.

The Indian Express (IE) – which was once known for its courageous journalism has turned into a rabid Hindu-hating and anti-national newspaper that mostly peddles Hinduphobia and paints Islamists as victims at the drop of a hat. The publication that fell to new depths under Shekar Gupta keeps plunging lower with each passing day.

Delhi Riots and how these publications have approached them

A detailed analysis has been made of the articles published by these three major dailies and the stance they have taken. What we find, and not surprisingly at all, is that Indian Express is not just Hinduphobic but doesn’t even make an attempt at appearing ‘neutral’. All of their articles are absolutely one-sided and where they cannot make victims out of minorities they simply gloss over the facts.

The other two are slightly better but only just. While some of the articles in TOI and HT have an anti-Hindu stance, an attempt is made to present themselves as neutral by making passing mention of rabid Islamists like Tahir Hussain. However, one thing that emerges clearly is that none of these publications dare to ‘call a spade a spade’. The whataboutery is just an attempt to keep the Hindu readers in good humor.

Facts that have been glossed over

The role of Islamist terror outfits such as PFI or damage caused to Hindu schools and temples are not even mentioned as a footnote. Even the attack on policemen by anti-CAA protestors has been downplayed by the media. Most importantly none of the media takes cognizance of the fact that these were planned anti-Hindu riots by anti-national Islamist forces.

A fact-finding group known as the Group of Intellectuals and Academicians (GIA) had filed a report after visiting ground zero and gathering all the facts and submitting the same to the home ministry.

Some of the reasons for the riots pointed out in the report include stock-piling of riot weapons, jihadi mobs indulging in targeted killings, urban naxal-jihadi nexus that promoted these riots, violent nature of anti-CAA protests, and prolonged radicalization of Muslims among others.

In conclusion, all we can say is the media failed to be objective in its approach. The role of any media is to gather the facts and lay them bare before its readers so that they can draw their own conclusions. The media in Bharat, however, is rabidly anti-Hindu and bends over backward to present perpetrators as victims.

(Featured Image Source: Chakra News)

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