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Access to Controversial BBC Documentary on PM Modi Blocked in India

© Sputnik / POOL / Go to the mediabankIndia's Prime Minister Narendra Modi takes part in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit in Samarkand, Uzbekistan.
India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi takes part in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit in Samarkand, Uzbekistan. - Sputnik India, 1920, 22.01.2023
The BBC documentary “India: The Modi Question” is about Narendra Modi’s leadership as state chief during the 2002 Gujarat riots. The unrest allegedly broke out after a train carrying Hindu pilgrims was set on fire.
India's federal Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has blocked the airing of a controversial BBC documentary about Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The ministry has also issued orders to social media platforms to bar sharing any clips from the documentary.
Kanchan Gupta, senior advisor, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, commented on the film on Twitter. Referring to the documentary as “hostile propaganda and anti-India garbage,” Gupta said that the “malicious documentary” had been examined by multiple ministries, including the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Ministry of External Affairs, and Ministry of Home Affairs.
“They found that it is casting aspersions on the authority and credibility of the Supreme Court of India, sowing divisions among various Indian communities, and making unsubstantiated allegations,” he added.
The senior adviser also said that BBC World’s “vile propaganda was found to be undermining the sovereignty and integrity of India, and having the potential to adversely impact India's friendly relations with foreign countries as also public order within the country”.
According to Gupta, the ministry issued the directions using emergency powers available to the government under information technology rules. However, he said that while the BBC has not aired the documentary in India, the video has been uploaded on some YouTube channels.
Narendra Modi addressing the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Convention in Indore - Sputnik India, 1920, 19.01.2023
World News
'Biased Reporting': British MP Slams BBC for Series Targeting Narendra Modi
The BBC was slammed by the federal Ministry of External Affairs, with MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi on Thursday terming the documentary as “biased” and “with a colonial mindset.”
During a media briefing, Bagchi said: “The bias, the lack of objectivity, and frankly a continuing colonial mindset, is blatantly visible. If anything, this film or documentary is a reflection on the agency and individuals that are peddling this narrative again. It makes us wonder about the purpose of this exercise and the agenda behind it and frankly we do not wish to dignify such efforts.”
However, reacting to the sharp criticism in India, the BBC said in an official statement that the documentary had been “rigorously researched according to highest editorial standards.”