Anil had tweeted on Tuesday that placing the views of the British broadcaster over Indian institutions would undermine the sovereignty of the nation.

Congress MP Shashi Tharoor
news Controversy Wednesday, January 25, 2023 - 16:38

Senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor, on Wednesday, January 25, rejected the views of Anil Antony, son of party colleague and former defence minister AK Antony, on a controversial BBC documentary on Gujarat riots and termed as "immature" his argument that it was an infringement into India's sovereignty. Anil had tweeted on Tuesday that placing the views of the British broadcaster over Indian institutions would undermine the sovereignty of the nation. He has since resigned from all posts he was holding in the Congress party, citing "intolerant calls" and "abuses" over the matter.

Shashi Tharoor, Lok Sabha MP from Thiruvananthapuram said that people of the country have the freedom to watch or not watch the BBC documentary on the 2002 riots and asked who can say the British broadcaster has no right to do a story on the topic. The Constitution of the country guarantees all rights for us to watch a documentary, he added.

When asked about Anil's argument that placing the views of the BBC over Indian institutions would set a "dangerous precedent" and "undermine" our sovereignty, Tharoor said he cannot agree with it. "I feel that this is an immature stand," he said.

"Because, the sovereignty of our country cannot be affected so easily. Will it be affected if a foreign documentary is screened? Whether our national security and sovereignty are so fragile to be affected by a documentary?" he asked.

The leader, however, said that Anil, who had handled the digital communications of the grand old party for sometime, was a good person and he had not discussed the BBC documentary issue with him.

Anil, who is said to be close to Tharoor, specially thanked him for his support in the resignation letter which he sent to the party leadership on Wednesday quitting his roles in the Congress -- as the Convener of Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) Digital Media, and as the National Co-coordinator of All India Congress Committee (AICC) Social Media and Digital Communications Cell."

Anil had on Tuesday tweeted that despite large differences with the BJP, those who support and place the views of the British broadcaster and of former UK foreign secretary Jack Straw, the "brain behind the Iraq war" (involving the US-led coalition in 2003) over Indian institutions are setting a dangerous precedent. The two-part BBC documentary, which states that it investigated certain aspects relating to the 2002 Gujarat riots when Prime Minister Narendra Modi was the chief minister of that state, has been blocked by the Ministry of External Affairs as a "propaganda piece" that lacked objectivity and reflected a "colonial mindset".

Read: ‘Gujarat riots pre-planned’: Caravan accesses UK report shown on BBC Modi documentary

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