Republic TV, founded by BJP’s Rajya Sabha MP Rajeev Chandrasekhar, has refused to comply with the order of the broadcasting watchdog, NBSA, to apologise to an innocent man, who Arnab Goswami had called thug in one of his debate programmes.
The NBSA had clearly instructed the channel to issue a full screen below apology before the start of its 7 September debate programme.
“On the debate ‘Jignesh Flop Show’ aired on Republic TV on 09.01.2018, at 9 pm, this channel had circled the visual of Mr A Singh (while running pictures of its news editor Ms Shivani Gupta) as targeting and intimidating her. On a complaint by A Singh, News Broadcasting and Standard Authority has passed an order dated 30.08.2018 holding that Mr Arnab Goswami, who anchored the programme, was not justified in using the words ‘I am going to show these crude, lewd hyenas/ show the dirty faces of lewd, cheap, vulgar, sexist pervert and Indian goons’ with reference to the complainant. News Broadcasting Standards furtehr held that the channel had violated the code of ethics and the broadcasting standards of the NBA and the Specific Guidelines Covering Reportage and should, therefore, air an apology to Mr A Singh. Accordingly, we, hereby, apologise to Mr A Singh for wrongly referring to him as lewd, cheap, vulgar, sexist pervert and Indian goon.’
On Friday, Goswami started his debate on fuel price rise but there was no mention of the apology. This was in clear violation of the NBSA order. Reacting to the development, Pratishtha Singh, the complainant’s wife said, “Arnab Goswami and Republic TV have NOT apologised as directed by NBSA. They have another chance to do so immediately before the 9 pm news on the 14/9/2018.”
Pratishtha Singh said that she and her husband were determined to take the matter to its logical end even if it meant filing a criminal complaint against Goswami and his channel. It seems trouble for Goswami is far from over.
In January this year, Goswami had to air an on-air apology for branding an ABP News reporter as a goon while covering the same rally organised by Jignesh Mevani. This was only after ABP had threatened to sue Republic TV and Goswami.