Jignesh Mevani wanted Republic mic out from his press conference, Chennai journalists boycott Gujarat MLA

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Dalit leader Jignesh Mevani on Tuesday was forced to call off his impromptu media interaction in Chennai after he demanded Republic TV’s representative be kept out of the press conference venue.

Jignesh Mevani
File Photo: The Indian Express

Around six journalists had gathered for a quick Q&A session with the Vadgam MLA. Mevani, however, demanded that Republic TV’s mic be removed. This was unacceptable to the Chennai journalists, who refused to agree to Mevani’s demand and decided to boycott his press meet in solidarity with their colleague from Republic TV.

One journalist told Janta Ka Reporter, “We had gone to speak to Jignesh because there’s clearly plenty of interest here in Tamil Nadu in what has to say. But, what he demanded was unacceptable since agreeing to his demands would set a wrong precedent. In Tamil Nadu, no politicians dictate their terms. They are simply not allowed to do so. If Jignesh was allowed today, some other local politicians, say Stalin, would do the same to reporters in future.”

Justifying his decision, Mevani said, “The nation wants to know tonight why I did this. Answer is : my integrity is impaccable. Be critical but don’t try to hit below the belt.”

Republic TV and its founder Arnab Goswami have been carrying out a concerted campaign against the Dalit leader. Last week, the channel had run a hashtag #JigneshFlopShow after he organised a rally in Delhi.

Republic TV was forced to issue an on-air apology to ABP News journalist after it called him a ‘goon’ during its prime time broadcast.

While Chennai-based journalists received support on Twitter, there were others who did not agree with their action.

Here’s how journalists and other social media users reacted in praise of Chennai journalists;

Here is how activists and other social media users responded to the news of Chennai journalists boycotting Mevani’s press conference.

3 COMMENTS

  1. JFA appreciates Chennai journalists for their solidarity
    Guwahati: Journalists’ Forum Assam (JFA) appreciates the united strength shown by the Chennai based journalists against a politician’s unprincipled demand and urged the media fraternity of the country to stand behind them.
    It may be noted that Jignesh Mevani, a newly elected legislator from Gujarat in a press meet on Tuesday in Chennai objected the presence of Republic Television reporter and then put condition that even if the reporter stay there, he must not ask questions. Angered with the condition, the television journalists decided to walk out of it as a show of solidarity.
    The young legislator commented that he would not to speak to the Republic, the news channel led by Arnab Goswami as a policy. However, a Times Now reporter Shabbir Ahmed firmly encountered him saying that the legislator must not demand which channel should be there or which not in a press meet.
    “We denounce the mentality of Jignesh Mevani to dictate the media. If he prefers to avoid any media outlet, he can do that, but he must not practice it in a press meet. Moreover, if he feels being abused by the coverage of a particular media outlet, he can go to the court,” said a statement issued by JFA president Rupam Barua and secretary Nava Thakuria.

  2. Mr.jignesh if ur honest in ur work then why ur afraid of any media? It shows ur self confidence VB level. For all the haters if republic T.v___ why r u so silent when ndtv is promoting its anti nationals agenda. I have witnessed so many interview of modi and bjp leaders on these anti national channel. They thouraly thrashed those idiotic reporters on their own channel , I know u can’t do it because u r not a real leader, one who try to divide nation for his own benefit can’t , challenge and win over Mr. Arnab

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