Arnab Goswami is known for his insane rant on fake nationalism and insulting anyone who doesn’t agree with him. But the controversial TV anchor crossed limits on Friday when he decided to insult legendary cricketer Sachin Tendulkar. This is because Sachin, deemed as the God of cricket in India, had said that India should not pull out of the World Cup match against Pakistan in this year’s World Cup in light of the Pulwama terror attack.
Using the hashtag #ShameOnAntiNationals, Goswami launched a blistering attack on Sachin, who has been conferred with the highest civilian honour Bharat Ratna for his contribution to the game. Goswami said, “I don’t believe in any Gods. Sachin Tendulkar is 100 percent wrong. Sachin Tendulkar, if he has any sense, he should realise that he should be the first person to say that don’t play with Pakistan. (Sunil) Gavaskar should be the second person to say that don’t play with Pakistan. These people say that we need two points. Both are damn wrong. We don’t need two points. I want revenge for my martyrs. Sachin Tendulkar can take his two points and put it in the dustbin.”
Goswami implied that there was no middle ground today as anybody, who did not agree with him were anti-nationals. “In this country there are only two sides now. There are people, who are with India and people are against India. Those, who want to take the middle road, are against India because there’s no middle road.”
This prompted a panelist on his show to walk out of the show. Political analyst Sudheendra Kulkarni said that he did not agree with him. “You are calling Sachin Tendulkar anti-national. You call Sunil Gavaskar anti-national. I am ashamed of you,” Kulkarni shouted before leaving the show.
But he wasn’t the only panelist to walk out of his show because of his comments on Tendulkar. Former AAP leader Ashutosh said that Goswami should be ashamed of himself for his attack on Tendulkar and Gavaskar. Ashutosh also asked Goswami why he was not questioning ‘his boss’ Prime Minister Narendra Modi for remaining busy with documentary shooting even after learning about the terror attack.
Sensing that he may lose another guest on the show, Goswami said, “It is my fervent appeal to Sachin Tendulkar and Sunil Gavaskar and Kapil Dev. You should be the first to say that we should not go out and play cricket with Pakistan. Because this country has given you a lot.”
Goswami said that he never called Tendulkar anti-national. One of his colleagues on the channel and known flag-bearer of the Hindutva brigade, Gaurav Arya, then launched extraordinary attack on Ashutosh calling him mentally ill among other insulting terminologies. As Ashutosh walked out, Arya shouted disparagingly, “Get out.” He clearly had Goswami’s blessings as the anchor looked the other way.
Tendulkar on Friday had said, “India has always come up trumps against Pakistan in the World Cup. Time to beat them once again. Would personally hate to give them two points and help them in the tournament.”
Tendulkar, however, said that he will support the government’s decision if it decided to boycott the match. He said, “Having said that, for me India always comes first, so whatever my country decides, I will back that decision with all my heart.”