Journalist Barkha Dutt alleges receiving threats from ‘powerful people’, launches stunning attack on Modi government

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Journalist Barkha Dutt on Thursday launched a stunning attack against the Centre’s Narendra Modi government alleging that she had received threats from ‘powerful people.’ Dutt said that there were attempts to launch a smear campaign to stop her from starting her new projects.

Barkha Dutt

Taking to Twitter Dutt wrote, “Received chilling veiled threats and “messages” from powerful people in the Establishment today that my family and I are under surveillance – and that I will be smeared & maligned to stop me from starting any new projects. Was advised to get my house debugged. Is this my country?”

In a separate tweet, the former NDTV editor wrote, “Over the last few months those associated with the ruling party have warned me – politely, impolitely – not to work on new TV projects and told me – “we will never allow them to happen”- today I was told a 45 minute meeting held on how to stop me, smear me, malign me, tap me.”

Dutt has reportedly been working on plans to launch a new TV channel. On Thursday she implied that the Centre, which has the authority to approve applications for new TV licence, had not approved her request. She added that the only files on news channels that moved under the current BJP government were  of Republic TV, launched by Arnab Goswami. Goswami had launched Republic TV in partnership with the BJP’s Rajya Sabha MP, Rajeev Chandrasekhar.

She wrote, “For the last year and half any coincidence that the only files for news channels that moved were on Republic. And we know their affiliation don’t we? Controlling the airwaves and allowing only those to operate who are on your side is a form of intimidation of media.”

Separately, she also told a website, “If anything happens to me and my family whether in terms of a smear campaign or any other threat, then the government and BJP will be responsible.”

One user told her on Twitter that it was ‘hard to believe’ her allegations given that Dutt had many ‘friends’ in the BJP government adding that she had ‘hardly been critical’ of the Modi government. The user, known as GhoseSpot said that he suspected Dutt’s allegations to be ‘malicious misinformation.’

To which Dutt responded, “Proof of the pudding is in eating. Let us see if they let the channel happen.”

Dutt hasn’t been one of those journalists fiercely critical of the government. She has had fairly good access to top names in the central government. Contrary to the central government’s established policy to not allow access of its big ministers to journalists critical of the government, Dutt has managed to interview big names such as former I&B Minister Smriti Irani, Union HRD Minister Prakash Javdekar, Union Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari and India’s junior home minister Kiren Rijiju among others.

Dutt had left NDTV last year to first launch The Print with Shekhar Gupta before parting her ways with the former editor of the Indian Express to launch her own initiative called MoJo.

1 COMMENT

  1. Like Mr.Rahul pappu Gandhi Borkha Dutt too does not understand that she is not taken seriously by anybody her time is gone. Just like Sagarika Ghose. She should not be concerned with threats as they are not for her per se. It is a threat for not throwing away money to waste in this economic state of India.

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