Aaj Tak on Sunday threw out a Kashmiri panelist for his statement sympathising with Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, the Sikh separatist leader who necessitated Operation Blue Star in June 1984.
The channel had invited panelists that included Maj Gen (Retd) GD Bakshi, defence expert Sushant Sareen, Congress spokesperson Rajeev Tyagi and BJP spokesperson RS Pathania, to discuss the growing unrest in the valley. Also joining the show was Inam-un-Nabi, who identifies himself as a political analyst.
The show’s anchor asked Nabi for his comments on whether Pakistan’s response will improve following the offer of talks by Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti to separatists and other stake holders in the strife-torn state.
“All political parties and other shades of political opinion ought to play their role in getting people of the state out of the unending cycle of violence. The government is ready to hold talks with all including Pakistan and separatists to find out lasting solution to the imbroglio peacefully.. We all need to give them a safe, secure and peaceful future,” Mufti was quoted as saying.
But instead of responding to the Aaj Tak anchor’s question, Nabi first moaned about not being given a chance to speak for 17 long minutes just because he was sitting in Jammu and Kashmir before he paid his condolences to Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale and the victims of Operation Blue Star. The show’s anchor, Sayeed Ansari, admonished Nabi stating that this was precisely his problem that he would choose to raise unrelated controversial issues even when invited to talk about other topics.
The Kashmiri panelist’s opening remarks on Bhindranwale and victims of Operation Blue Star also irked Tyagi and Maj Gen (Retd) Bakshi. Tyagi in particular demanded the removal of Nabi from the show. Maj Gen (Retd) Bakshi slammed Nabi for condoning sedition by paying condolences to Bhindranwale.
Soon, Nabi had disappeared from the debate. Tyagi then thanked every panelist for supporting his demand to have Nabi removed from the show.