New Delhi: The latest “surgical strike”, in Arnab Goswami’s words, saw the Indian government banned 59 Chinese apps.
As one can imagine, news channels were beside themselves with elation on this latest move, with adjectives and adulations pouring in from all quarters. Emotions ran high as anchors praised the government and directed angry remarks at China.
Republic TV’s Arnab Goswami outdid himself. In a clip from his show, which has gone viral on social media, Goswami broke all past records of being dramatic — becoming rather comical at times.
Enunciating every word carefully and gesticulating frantically, he said — “The sheer suddenness of the move, the unexpected nature of the move, the unpredictability of the move, the fact that there was no warning to the Chinese. They don’t know what hit them, now the Chinese will know that when we want to act, we shall act as WE WISH.” See it to believe it:
At this point it is difficult to tell whether something is parody or real pic.twitter.com/oTc0eyOoin
— dorku (@Dorkstar) June 29, 2020
India TV’s Rajat Sharma was his usual expressionless self as he explained this Modi government move: “China ko raaste mein laane ke liye Bharat ne pehli koshish diplomacy se ki thi. Par ab yeh.”
Sharma was also privy to some inside info, “Humein information mili hai ki China dobara dokha dene ke liye tayaar hai. China ke 2 ya 3 bases active ho gaye hai…Par Bharat ne bhi dikha diya hai ki hum shanti ke paksh mein hai lekin aankh uthayi toh chodenge nahi.”
He then hailed the arrival of six Rafale jets in July and said China will be forced to combat weapons it has never seen before. Is this a war cry?
Aaj Tak’s Sweta Singh turned to the business angle: “Bharat bada bazaar hai par uska faayda nahi uthaya ja sakta.”
On Times Now, there was consensus among panelists that the ban was a bold move.
BJP’s national spokesperson Sambit Swaraj is so excited these days that he often speak Hindi on English channels — “China ne galat aadmi se panga le liya hai.”
“Even before the LAC standoff , the Modi government was quite particular about the economic interests of India,” he added, claiming that this had been planned even prior to the stand-off.
Attributing some bold claims to “sources”, anchor Navika Kumar said, “These measures have only been taken for two reasons — for public safety and to protect the sovereignty of India. The move comes after intelligence agencies flagged that these apps have been a national security concern.”
Lawyer Shehzad Jai Hind said, “The government agencies have been contemplating this move for the past few days now. This is a digital surgical strike on China.”
Political analyst Ashutosh said, “China is a new imperialist force and it has to be stopped where it is. This is a very good step taken by the government of India.”
“We don’t need to explain, China should get a message that you don’t mess with a country like India,” he added.
Onto some other news, namely a deadly pandemic—remember that?
The Maharashtra government extended the lockdown in the state till 31 July, giving rise to a lot of confusion as the rest of the country continues in the ‘unlock’ phase.
Anchor Vishnu Som, on NDTV 24×7, discussed the merits and demerits of this step.
BJP spokesperson Niranjan Shetty said, “I fail to understand when the whole country has gone on to the mission of Unlock 1.0, why the Maharashtra government has done this.”
Shiv Sena’s Priyanka Chaturvedi noted, “Personally, everything that comes from the BJP are mostly attacks. As far as the state is concerned, we started the lockdown in a phase-wise manner and the unlock will be the same.”
“We have also observed that a lot of travel is unnecessary and people are flouting norms,” she added.
On Mirror Now, anchor Tanvi Shukla discussed the custodial deaths of Jayaraj and Bennix in Tuticorin, and brought several more such cases of police brutality in Tamil Nadu to light.
The channel boldly called the police “beasts in khaki”.
News website TheNewsMinute’s Priyanka Thirumurthy highlighted instances where these police officials were involved in other cases of police brutality.
“In February, they had beaten up a pastor and a disabled man among seven others,” she alleged.
Former additional SP of Chennai, M.R. Nandakumar, weighed in on the discussion saying, “No police officer will willingly kill someone.”
“I don’t think the injuries caused to them were fatal but the high court is monitoring the situation,” he added.
Shukla then fired back, “Judicial Magistrate told Madras HC that police isn’t cooperating. If they’ve not done it intentionally, then why are they not cooperating with the judiciary?”