Rajasthan Chief minister Ashok Gehlot on Wednesday urged the Editor’s Guild of India to sack Republic TV editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami, on account of the anchor’s comments about interim Congress president Sonia Gandhi.
“Attack on Mrs. Sonia Gandhi by Arnab Goswami is highly condemnable. He has gone insane and crossed all limits, he should be ashamed of himself. I must ask the Editors guild – isn’t this all-time low for journalism? Mr. Rajeev Chandrasekhar must sack him immediately,” Gehlot wrote.
In his prime time segment, Goswami spoke about the lynching of multiple Sadhus in Palghar, Maharashtra, and accused Sonia Gandhi of being silent about the incident. In the show, he allegedly said that had the victims been “maulvis” or “Christian padres”, Sonia Gandhi would not have been silent.
Goswami’s comments attracted significant furore, with several Congress workers filing FIRs against him. Those tweeting about filing FIRs against Goswami included Kumar Raja, Congress spokesperson in Jharkhand, the Mumbai Youth Congress who demanded an FIR against Goswami for “inciting communalism and violence in the country” as well as the Youth Congress outfits in Telangana, Jammu and Kashmir, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand and Uttar Pradesh.
FIRs by different Congress outfits were filed under multiple categories. The Mumbai Youth Congress filed the FIR against Goswami under IPC sections 117, 120B, 153, 153A, 295A, 298, 500, 504, 505 and 506, r/w section 66A of the IT act.
The Telangana Youth Congress Committee filed an FIR under sections 117, 120B, 153, 153A, 295A, 298, 500, 504, 505 and 506 of the IPC, accusing Goswami of inciting the Hindu community against Muslims and Christians and of attempting to generate communal disharmony.
The incident sparked furious debate on Twitter, with both #ArrestAntiIndiaArnab and #IsupportArnabGoswami having over 700,000 as of Wednesday night. Goswami, in his show on Wednesday, referred to and challenged the “1000 FIRs” being filed against him, saying that he would continue to “expose” Sonia Gandhi.
On Monday night, Goswami resigned from the Editor’s Guild of India.
On Wednesday, Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh sought to downplay the communal angle being given to the Palghar lynchings, saying that of the 101 people arrested in connection with the incident, none were Muslim. The NHRC has also sought a probe into the incident.