Thursday, 30 June, 2022
HomeOpinionDon't stop at Raghuram Rajan. Here's a list for Rahul Gandhi's interviews

Don’t stop at Raghuram Rajan. Here’s a list for Rahul Gandhi’s interviews

My list for Rahul Gandhi includes Arnab Goswami and Tablighi Jamaat members. He can show up Modi in these interviews.

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Since Prime Minister Narendra Modi refuses to do a press conference to answer pressing questions over the Covid-19 situation, or any crisis for that matter, it was great to have former RBI governor Raghuram Rajan offer his expert views in a video chat with Congress leader Rahul Gandhi. Rajan’s insight on what India can expect economically during these times and what the Modi government should be doing to alleviate the mammoth problems that the coronavirus pandemic has ushered must be welcomed by anyone worried over the extended lockdown, which threatens to worsen India’s dwindling economy.

But other than the economic prescience gained from the half-hour-long chat, it was refreshing to see Rahul Gandhi interview Raghuram Rajan also for two reasons.

One, India’s political class is known to be a megalomaniac and it’s rare to see politicians publicly seek advice on matters that raise anxiety among common people. The interview was a departure from the know-it-all attitude that we too often see in the ruling BJP dispensation. Imagine a prime minister who has never even remotely been associated with the defence forces, let alone serve in the military, boasting about giving advice to the Air Force on how to attack the enemy — as Modi apparently did during the Balakot airstrikes against Pakistan by telling the IAF to use ‘cloud cover’.

The second reason the interview matters is that, at least this way, the Indian public got some perspective on the depth and darkness of the abyss that the economy is falling into, which the Modi government refuses to acknowledge to the detriment of all of us. With some insight from a world-renowned economist on what lies ahead in terms of employment and expenditure, Indians can mentally prepare for the hard times. A heads-up is essential especially because PM Modi has a perverse liking for surprise announcements, which are almost always disastrous — the 2016 demonetisation and the nationwide lockdown due to the coronavirus being prime examples.


Also read: Arnab Goswami’s attack continues. Rahul, Priyanka, where’s your ‘enough is enough’ moment?


The possible interviewees

In fact, Rahul Gandhi should conduct more such interviews to help people better understand the times we live in. Hopefully, the Modi government will listen too.

Manmohan Singh: In the very opening lines of a recent op-ed, the former prime minister addressed the most crucial aspect of the thin ice that India is terrifyingly treading on. Singh wrote:

“India faces imminent danger from the trinity of social disharmony, economic slowdown and a global health epidemic… I deeply worry that this potent combination of risks may not only rupture the soul of India but also diminish our global standing as an economic and democratic power in the world.”

This is from a man who has been on ground zero, taking care of India for a decade as a Prime Minister, no matter how “remote-controlled” people accused him of being, and who has been the 5th chief economic adviser to the government of India, the 15th governor of the Reserve Bank of India, the 14th deputy chairman of the Planning Commission, the 22nd finance minister of India, and the 16th minister of personnel, public grievances and pensions. He is an alumnus of Oxford and Cambridge universities as well as a professor of international trade in Delhi School of Economics. He really has been there, done that and seen it all. In fact, for his credentials, he remains tragically under-utilised. India truly doesn’t know how to value its geniuses. Perhaps Punjab chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh does, which is why he has appointed him to guide his government in reviving the state’s economy after the fiscal lull brought upon the state and the country by the Covid-19 crisis.

Tablighi Jamaat members: The Congress is often labelled as a “Muslim party” that “appeases” the community. With an image as lethal as this in these divided times, it will be heartening to see Rahul Gandhi not shy away and leave it upon his ‘janeu’ to counter the image of “minority appeaser”. He should instead hold a video conference with the members of the Tablighi Jamaat who donated their blood plasma for Covid-19 patients.

It will be insightful for the common people to learn about the members of Tablighi Jamaat who were accused of deliberately trying to spread the coronavirus and still chose to donate their plasma ignoring all the hate directed towards them. Was it to correct their image or did they truly do it out of a sense of duty and charity?


Also read: Indian media is waging a holy war against Muslims. It acts like hyenas


A psychologist: A 23-year-old student from Punjab who had just returned from Sydney jumped to his death from the seventh floor of Delhi’s Safdarjung Hospital where he was admitted following complaints of fever and headache. He later tested negative for Covid-19. A 60-year-old man from Noida “wakes up in the middle of the night screaming” the name of his grandson who is stuck in a coronavirus-infected country in Europe. But Rahul Gandhi shouldn’t be asking the obvious questions surrounding depression and anxiety. Many journalists have spoken to psychologists regarding this. What Rahul Gandhi should do is pick the psychologist’s mind over why certain politicians behave so peculiarly — such as stay in denial of the economic hardships people are facing, doing little to alleviate them despite being in a position to, or refusing to be questioned when relevant answers will make the world of a difference.

Arnab Goswami: Rahul Gandhi’s interaction with Republic TV’s host Arnab Goswami will perhaps be one of the most viewed videos of our times. But the interview should be conducted Republic TV style with Rahul’s mic at least two notches louder than Arnab’s and the Congress leader being injected with a serum that makes him go from his usual calm self to Arnab-like delirium where he keeps asking (or rather shouting out) the same question over and over even if the person has already answered it. Rahul Gandhi should also use the mute button for Arnab generously and keep telling him: “The nation wants to know, Arnab.”

Chief ministers of Congress-ruled states: Although Rahul Gandhi is not in a leadership position to be taking stock of how states ruled by his party are faring during the pandemic, he could still hold a joint conference call with Congress chief ministers. This way, the people will know what strategies have been planned once the lockdown ends and how these states — Punjab, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan, Puducherry, and even Maharashtra, are going to revive their economies. Such an interview will also straightaway put spotlight on what the BJP governments are doing. It will go a long way in changing the perception of the public with regards to the Congress’ leadership skills, which are always doubted, despite being better in almost every way, in comparison to Modi and Amit Shah’s.

The author is a political observer and writer. Views are personal.

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78 COMMENTS

  1. Whilst I strongly advocate interviews with the likes of MMS And Raghuram Rajan, I do not see the need for interacting with people like Arnab Goswami. It might earn Rahul Gandhi a few TRPs but to what purpose? Arnab will never concede to Rahul’s views and will remain an ass with a brown ring around his nose-he has his nose so deeply embedded up Modi’s posterior.

  2. Whatever may be the errors of omission & commission of Modi-Shah duo, their loyalties have never been outside India. That matters more than everything else.

  3. Zainab, you call yourself as a political observer? I suppose it needs a small change, ‘political parody’

  4. News channel are not a voice of public they are reporting there own agenda ? Who will ask questions if they are against public ? Public will reply

  5. Ms Zainab, it’s a pity that you call yourself a political observer. I think I could have read a more balanced write up on similar topic by Rahul Gandhi himself. The print sounds more like an Anti BJP rhetoric. To maintain readership, the Print needs to pink slip some of the observers it seems.

  6. Stupidest praising effort for RaGa. He is the best political comedian and no one can beat him.
    Now your tries to make him look mature doesnt change reality.

  7. Completely agree with you. Rahul Gandhi ji press conference and interviews has been refreshing. These efforts has had an positive effect on people like us who watched. We could see geniune concern for India and its a treat to watch such efforts. Keep up the good work !!!!!

  8. All the qualifications of MMS, but it would have been good to know what is the quAlification of RAGA, his sister and mother? Hote come they are the only best in the grand old party?
    What public service RAGA or his sister have done except for MODI bashing in last 6 years.

  9. Dear author,
    Do you ever read comment section

    My advice to you is, please don’t humiliate yourself for the advancement of some immature politician

  10. Very biased…..Perhaps financed by Congress as they are desperate. Rahul/Sonia are responsible for damaged reputation of Congress party. Raghuram has his own agenda.
    Truth will prevail….BJP and Modi can only do good for India….they have my full support.

  11. Hellow journalist from single source, we also remember his interview with Arnab before 2014. .. please mention that as well…

  12. This author is well paid my moron Rahul Gandhi… I don’t why this idiot thinks people are so dumb to believe whatever shit he writes….

  13. ThePrint should encourage Zainab to convert Rahul into a good journalist. We all know that RaGa is simply not PM material.

  14. One joker interviewing another. Has any economist did good for India or the world? Raghuram Rajan and Amritya sen have filled their personal coffers. Raghuram Rajan is a Congress stooge who allowed loot of banks during his tenure as RBI governor. He is unwanted in India, so is Rahul.

  15. Let Rahul Gandhi interview the Jamaat men who spat and misbehaved with our corona warriors. Also those who absconded and hid, instead of voluntarily coming forward for quarantine. 4persons volunteering plasma does not exonerate the thousands infected by Jamaat. Of course Zainab and her ilk can only see the rare good deeds of her community and trumpet them.

  16. Raghuram Rajan is a jaded media hungry text book economist who presided over the burgeoning of NPA’s and did nothing to control inflation..Manmohan Singh was a dumb and deaf Indian version of NERO with no spine and no voice in his tenure as PM..His lasting legacy will be the shame of Sharm al Sheikh where he capitulated to Pakistani diabolic pressure..As for interviewing the tablighi the author shows up her penchant for shamelessly playing the victim card..she is not the first and certainly won’t be the last.. RaGa interviewing Arnab Goswami..? That’s a laugh..even now Pappu would have nightmares of the llast time he faced Arnab the bad boy of English News..or maybe Raga is too dumb..alongwith Antonia Maino the liberatti press are forcing Pappu to step up and play the game he clearly abhors and is not cut out for..the more pappu op4ns his mouth the more he trips over himself…aided by brain dead sycophants like the author

  17. It seems madam is yearing for a govt over which they can exercise veto power, just as they did before 2014. Alas, u have to wait for 2024, unless some major catastrophe strikes earlier.

  18. “It will be insightful for the common people to learn about the members of Tablighi Jamaat who were accused of deliberately trying to spread the coronavirus and still chose to donate their plasma ignoring all the hate directed towards them. Was it to correct their image or did they truly do it out of a sense of duty and charity?”
    Do the “common man” expect Tablighi to own responsibility for the spread of Virus?What will he achieve by the interview?

  19. Madam, your views also seems to be one sided , favouring one side, as political observer views has to be balanced else your views looses relevance for a reader.
    How do you know that the central government is not taking views of economic experts and others to resolve issues?? People will have to drop lutyens mindset…

  20. I am asking this question in all seriousness. I didn’t follow even after reading the entire article, if this is a serious piece or supposed to be sarcastic.

  21. So many people have told me that theprint is actually a biased and sponsored news medium by anti BJP brigade. I haven’t accepted it so far but after reading this and many other articles which targets only Modi and BJP, I am compelled to believe that it is. Not a fair news portal at all.

  22. He should ask this question.Why politicians don’t have a retiring age?
    Most countries had a two months notice.Have women premiers between better in handling the crisis?Has the age of the premiers have any effect on how they have handled the situation?alAn old premier may have risk aversion due to his age or elections or any other reasons and this may be affecting his decisions
    One can go back even in history for examples .
    The question to answer is,’Why don’t politicians retire?’

  23. When Arnab interviewed Rahul Gandhi in 2014, We all saw what happened. Things will be the same when Rahul Gandhi interviews Arnab,

  24. “despite being better in almost every way, in comparison to Modi and Amit Shah’s. “”
    Despite being better has different definition here . Dont know how and in which form it is narrated but is foolish act and waste page.
    Could have been narrated better but pitty on writer who thinks congress leadership is WAY better than those mentioned , be alive and active in your day to day life to acquire better knowledge about current affairs so more logical views are expressed. Its good to get paid for praising someone but that too requires sophisticated approach and not such null and void tool.
    Think twice……

  25. he should also interview these people or allow them to interview him or have a discussion :
    a) Ramachandra guha ( He will be the perfect mirror to his true self)
    b) Siddharth Varadarajan / Naresh fernandes ( to know how close or how far his is to left ideology)
    c ) Mohan Bhagwat / Ram Madhav ( to know how close or how far his is to right ideology )

  26. Hey Zainab you need to understand that people do not take RaGa seriously. It’s BJP who is obsessed with him as he is easy to target. Interviews can’t make RaGa ‘ image that you are expecting. He would have win people’ s trust not only muslims and other minorities but also so called hindutva base. Otherwise same people would vote for BJP even in 2024 also. And they would be in power with ease.

  27. An interview by RaGa with some ‘talking heads’ suggested by this writer is going to “show up” Modi?
    What a silly idea?
    An entitled dynast playing ‘arm chair General’ with a bunch of talking heads like AG and sociopaths like TJ members.
    “ But the interview should be conducted Republic TV style with Rahul’s mic at least two notches louder than Arnab’s and the Congress leader being injected with a serum that makes him go from his usual calm self to Arnab-like delirium where he keeps asking (or rather shouting out) the same question over and over even if the person has already answered it. Rahul Gandhi should also use the mute button for Arnab generously and keep telling him: “The nation wants to know, Arnab.”
    How childish is this?
    This piece of writing is low-point for this website, even for an opinion piece.

    • It’s not necessary to talk a sold out A.Gowswamy.
      Let Rahul Gandhi call our PM for a public press conference and if he accepts ask him the problems of our nation facing.

  28. Really usual print stuff of even try to show RaGa as competitor of Modi. Undoubtedly Modi leads in this comparison all the time .Well economy is one the most biggest confirm for any nation but India will do better as already IMF projections are clear about it. Now lockdown is in end this is only politics .

  29. and talk to Congress CMs? about what? r they doing any better job? Can congress win in these states in the coming elections? please don’t be in your dreams Zainab.

  30. Joke of the day by great economist MR RAGA .when this man will be matured? May be never and will remain as ENTERTAINER

  31. A Prime minister need not give interviews for each and every issue. He gives broad guide lines on how the country should be run. It’s the council of ministers and bureaucracy that run the country.

  32. OK!
    ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!
    THIS AUTHOR AND HIS ENTIRE CLAN MUST LEAVE INDIA AND RELOCATE TO PAKISTAN THAT WAS DEMANDED AND GIVEN TO THEM TO GO LIVE THERE.

    WHEN ARE THEY LEAVING?

  33. we are in a national emergency like situation.
    nobody is interested in your petty politics discussion.

  34. Poor poor Zainab! All you are left with is an incompetent, uneducated, weed smoking dynast named Rahul Maino. How hard Antonio Maino and you guys are trying to launch him as your political leader again and again and again. This interview with Raghuram Rajan has protrayed him as a fool who has no vision for India and is going around asking for opinions. It is actually RRR who has improved his image in front of the public – a good platform to launch his political career if he wishes to. Sorry to disappoint you but the product you are trying hard to market is an expired one with no takers.

  35. Economists as a class, are bogus. Even after 70 yrs of Independence we are struggling to find two square meals, a house to live, a toilet, electric light, education, health care, safe drinking water, sanitation, roads & civic amenities. We have grown enormously in dishonesty, corruption, criminals, strikes, disputes & disruption. Financial sector in doledrums. Fragmented socity. In these 70 years. This bogus class and the scoundrel class are responsible. We know our problems and indigenous solutions. Keep these two class at bay. I have sheer contempt for these two class.

  36. Zainab….Aaj Antonia Maino KhanDan bina sanitizer ke squeaky clean feel kar raha hoga…kya Chaata hai bhai jaan tumne!!! Actually his rabid hate for Modi has seen another petty frustrated attempt thru this article!

    ONE Q ZAINAB: Raghu said millions will die in India by May2020….HOW MANY DID MODI SAVE IF RAGHU & GANDHI WERE INTELLECTUALLY BRILLIANT IN THEIR PROJECTION OF MILLIONS OF CORONA DEATHS IN INDIA??

  37. This is an anti-Modi tirade that does not have any substance. A pile of blah-blah against Modi is not an article. I wonder how The Prints publishes rubbish like this.

  38. Where does The Print recruit these Rs 50 journalists from? They are good enough to only churn out garbage worthy, space filling articles.
    Zainab you should move to Filmfare – that’s all you are good for.

  39. Will you also recommend that when he does the Tablighi Jamaat interviews, he also talks to those who misbehaved with their doctors and nurses, “spitting and shitting”, to use your own words? Maybe he can do the psychologist interview first and use that knowledge to understand why plasma donors have such strange hygiene issues.

  40. This content is getting more and more laughable by every passing day, did the lockdown affect the prints mental stability?

  41. This content is getting more and more laughable by every passing day, did the lockdown affect the prints mental stability? Chalo Acha hai ane do aur interviews, memers ke liye content hi content Hoga, desh KO 60 Saal se kha Kar bechnewale ab dusro par ungli uthayenge wah wah wah!keep it up gandhi

  42. What is it that the author wants to convey.She has nothing of substance to say except her hatred for BJP and the Prime Minister. The Muslim Community in North India is suffering in penury and poverty due to their clergy led leadership and Madrasa education.Instead of suffering from a selfpitying syndrome the educated Muslims like the Author should help the community to join the mainstream of Indian society rather than being obsessed with the safeguarding of the Sharia and other Islamic practices.The Muslims in Kerala (30 percent of the State Population) eexercise political power and are on par with the non-Muslim majority.The same is the case in Tamilnadu.The main reason for their advancement is mainly because they consider themselves as Malayalees and Tamils first and then only their religious identity.The rest of the Muslim community in India will also benefit if they submerge their religious identity in the mainstream of Indian Society while retaining their Constitutionally guaranteed right to practice their own religion.

  43. Papu is again in the mood entertaining us. This time in New packaging with some new slaves, some old foxes removed. Next 10 years no chance

  44. You launch in any new packaging. The stuff inside is known to Indian people. Pappu will be paapi only. We miss him much nowadays. Let him entertain us, it long time now. Iam sure next 10 years khangress will be unemployed in this country

  45. Congress should display real leader ship skill as a responsible opposition.Abusing Modi,RSS,BJP ,without constructive proposals have irritated & disappointed people.

  46. It’s time that HINDUS consolidate there votes they should concentrate on education and NEVER forget the fact that religious fundamentalist want to bring congrass to power to ensure no population control measures are adopted and a education with fake historical narrative is imprinted on the psyche of HINDUS to keep them divided and weak politically. It’s also important to be noted that media has been infiltrated by such people whose mind is covered by illogical religious beliefs and a belief to project a fake victim narrative.

  47. Ya,along with that he should also ask the Tablighi’s why are they known to be a terror recruitment hotspot,why is it that many terror outfits have connections to them,they should also be asked why were they hiding in different parts of the country instead of coming in front of the authorities and getting treatment,they should also be asked why were some of their people spitting at the nurses,shitting openly in the hospitals and walking around naked in front of them.

    He shld also ask,why were ppl from one community pelting stones at the doctors who had come to treat them,why were ppl packing the mosques when the entire country was under lockdown.

    Oh sorry,if we ask these and many such questions we automatically become islamophobes, fascists,unsecular and all the other fancy words used generally.By the way this article is very unbiased.

  48. The way print journalists and editors fantasise about RAGA political comeback evry other month is laughworthy stop taking bribes from congress high command and let someone else rise and lead the opposition , then only our democracy can flourish.
    This fetish of installing RAGA as pm has to stop now ,stop this delusions and mayb ur reporting will be less biased and more based on facts.
    Would you have supported the indian cricket repeatedly installed a losing captain who is white washed in consecutive world cups and numerous series in between interspersed with few victories riding on others coat tails , m sure u wudnt have .Stop this corruption and hold high the independence of the fifth column.

  49. The way print journalists and editors fantasise about RAGA political comeback evry other month is laughworthy stop taking bribes from congress high command and let someone else rise and lead the opposition , then only our democracy can flourish.
    This fetish of installing RAGA as pm has to stop now ,stop this delusions and mayb ur reporting will be less biased

  50. OK. No second opinion about Mr Raghuram Rajan’s acumen & knowledge. But that doesn’t mean, he is NUMERO UNO. He is one of the many intelligent & knowledgeable Indian Economists/Financial Analysts n Advisors. One sincere request to Mr Raghuram Rajan—-Please be positive & assist your beloved Country rather than be always a Critic for the sake of opposition. This great Country is built by the sacrifices of many intellectuals, when you were non- existent. It’s very clear Mr Rajan—-You are bigot & biased.
    Jai Hind

  51. How and why Raguramrajan thought that rahul is the fit person to interview. rahul is a big big zero. rr prove that he is also a big zero.

  52. Author’s views appear logical in tune with time, but with all ‘best’ economists, fin experts at disposal for Stalwart MMS in pre-2014era, was our economy really progressing? It was stuck in scams: may be MMS functioning under remote control! Let’s face the facts rationally than emotionally than clouded by hate campaign. Modi shd take advice from Raghuram Rajan & other experts, I tweeted at beginning of 2014&2019. But who listens?

  53. I lost her at “Tablighi Jamaat”.
    When are we going to learn that ” a crime is a crime “, irrespective of majority/minority status?

  54. i have not see Theprint critical to Modi OR government of India.Always biased and supporting BJP .
    theprint is not reporting anything which is unpleasant to BJP,Modi and goverment .
    Shame on you

    • There are levels to bias. And there is the Print. Till like Last year the tones of the articles were pretty neutral but ever since March its become evident that The Print is just a Media Arm of Congress just like the Republic is of the BJP

    • Mr. Jagarnath Rai, it seems ur reading habits are poor. U r unable 2 know the thoughts and views of the author of this article which is surely the print views. Baby,u must enroll urself in primary section of a good english school. Poor fellow.😏

    • If THIS is what you have to say, you are either illiterate or blind. Read The Print back issues, you will find more articles unfairly criticizing the BJP than fairly complimenting it.

  55. RaGa criticising the Modi Government day in and day out has not worked.
    So let the process take a different route.
    We will take help from the educated people to explain the short comings.
    Let us see if this strategy works or fails strategicaly.

  56. “. It will go a long way in changing the perception of the public with regards to the Congress’ leadership skills, which are always doubted, despite being better in almost every way, in comparison to Modi and Amit Shah’s.”

    Please explain how they’re better. I’m curios.

  57. Hey…. wait
    Rahul was absolutely destroyed by Arnab while
    Modi confidently answered all questions asked by Arnab..
    I wasted 5 min reading your article…I hope you got your 2Rs from this stupid article… Wait! It ain’t even worth 2Rs…
    Coming from a seventeen year old

  58. Interesting. Just to make a few points. Modi advising military without any understanding of their activities. In any democratic countries, it the responsibility of the head of the state to stay awake and support the operation. After all if the operation fails all blames fall on him. Obama was watching the Abottabad operation live not because he is a veteran. You may not understand that because you may be more appreciative of the Pak kind of governance.
    No doubt, Raghu ram Rajan is a top economist but don’t assume that he is the only one and don’t insists that the government should seek advise from him. They have enough people who know their business. Now about the video conference Rahul need to do with Tabligi Good idea. Let it be done. By that Rahul will be concluding his mission of finishing his party. BJP will like people like you to advise Rahul.

  59. HINDUS must get together and improve on their education and political skills. Congrass and the religious bigots want to take this country back to dark ages of mughal and British type rule. Beware you don’t want to have a rule where anti HINDU journalist and ultra leftist will set up education curriculum and hijack freedom of scientific thought and competing with the world .

  60. Have you switched to writing comedy now Zainab? “He can show up Modi in these interviews”.
    This is the funniest comment I’ve read for 2 weeks.

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