On Monday Sepoy K Vikas Janardhan, became the 18th solider to fall victim to the terror attack in Uri in Jammu and Kashmir.
Two other critically injured soldiers have also been airlifted to the military hospital in Delhi.
17 soldiers were killed in the attack on Sunday, while about 23 others injured.
The terror attack in Uri has left Indians shocked and enraged with many demanding firm action against Pakistan. Others on social media have been quick to remind Prime Minister Narendra Modi highlighting the perceived hypocrisy in his hawkish approach against the neighbouring country that he adopted during the Lok Sabha elections of 2014.
But the questions seeking to expose Modi’s stand, adopted to win elections, largely remained confined to social media users as none in the mainstream media could muster the courage to put the Centre’s BJP-led government in the dock on what was the worst terror attack for over a decade.
‘Patriots’ amongst us desperately looked at the ‘nationalist’ news channel Times Now to represent general public’s anger on its high-profile debate show Newshour, presented by the nation’s conscience-keeper, Arnab Goswami.
Goswami remained true to himself and did host a special debate show despite it being a Sunday. His guests included the usual suspects, Lt Gen (Retd) Jaiswal, Times Now’s resident expert Maroof Raza, former army general and now the RSS’ posterboy, Maj General GD Bakshi and former India diplomat G Parthasarathy.
The dominating theme of the debate was that India must attack Pakistan without caring much about the nuclear reactions from the neighbouring country!
Another highlight of the debate was a unanimous praise for Narendra Modi government for using the ‘strongest’ condemnation of the terror strike yet.
In Raza’s words, ‘I don’t think that there’s been such clarity of intent (by the central government.)’
But, the killer blow came from Goswami, who blamed the former prime minister, Manmohan Singh, for Uri attack. Yes, you heard it right. According to the nation’s most patriotic journalist, the Uri attack was a fallout of the ‘biggest blunder’ by the former prime minister.
This is what India’s ‘second most popular hero’ after Modi had to say.
“My personal greatest frustration has been with the long-rope theory. And I don’t know why the people, when you say stop engaging with Pakistan, say ‘you are a hawk.’ But Parthasarathy will remember that the greatest mistake Manmohan Singh made was that he went and met Nawaz Sharif for one hour in a New York hotel on 29 September 2013, just days after the twin attacks in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kathua and Samba.”
Fantastic observation indeed! Many would argue why the Times Now’s editor-in-chief, who had recently received social media roasting for his ‘fixed’ interview with Modi, stopped at Singh. He ought to have blamed all non-BJP prime ministers going as far back as Nehru era for the alarming increase in terror attacks under Modi government. I mean blame everyone except Modi for the present mess.
Goswami also appeared to have forgotten that Pakistan-backed militants had mounted an audacious attack on India’s Air Force base in Pathankot earlier this year. This was barely a week after Modi had chosen to stop over in Lahore to enjoy the birthday bash organised by his Pakistani counterpart, Nawaz Sharif.
For Goswami, this too may have been a diplomatic masterstroke. Of course, Goswami did not find fault in Modi’s foreign policy when he invited the Pakistani delegation consisting of ISI officers to visit the Pathankot air base.
Instead of reminding Modi and BJP President, Amit Shah, for their tall claims made against Pakistan during the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, Goswami made several desperate attempts to exonerate the current prime minister on the Uri attacks on Sunday.
If one ever needed an example of an utterly biased piece of journalism by Goswami on his ‘nation’s favourite channel’, they need not look beyond Sunday’s Newshour debate on the Uri attacks.
You can watch the ‘historic’ Times Now debate below (Goswami’s gem appears 18 minutes onwards)