A big row has broken out after comedian Kunal Kamra tweeted a video of him accosting journalist and Republic TV Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami on an IndiGo flight on Tuesday. Subsequently, IndiGo and later Air India and SpiceJet, suspended the comedian from flying on their airlines.
As the debate raged on over the action taken against Kunal, several social media users pulled out a 2017 video where a Republic TV reporter, Deepti Sachdeva, similarly confronted RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav who was travelling in an aircraft.
In the clip, Arnab Goswami says that News Editor Deepti Sachdeva has managed to interview Tejashwi Yadav, while he was on a flight to New Delhi to hold a meeting with Congress leader Rahul Gandhi.
In the interview, the reporter approaches Tejashwi and asks, āCan we quickly have a word, what happened in the meeting with you and Nitish ji?ā
Tejashwi is heard responding that this was not the right place to talk. The reporter then insists, saying, āWe donāt get to speak to you because you donāt speak to the media at all.ā
Tejashwi then tells the reporter that they will speak in time and that the other passengers on the flight have to take their meals as well. āDo not disturb them," he is heard saying.
Even as she is seen questioning the politician, a crew member is heard asking the reporter and the cameraperson to go back to their seats. āMaāam please go back otherwise we will have to divert the flight,ā the crew member is heard saying.
Hello Arnab / @republic remember this āSuper Exclusive interview' with @yadavtejashwi inside @jetairways by your reporter?ā Mohammed Zubair (@zoo_bear) January 28, 2020
Crew members tried to intervene by repeatedly requesting her to return to her seat but she continued. @kunalkamra88 just did a @republic on you. https://t.co/TEdQzjB79U pic.twitter.com/TKc1MPgsoR
Many Twitter users pointed out that at the time, no action had been taken against the Republic TV crew whereas Kunal Kamra had been promptly suspended from flying for portraying "unacceptable behaviour" onboard the flight. Three airlines, IndiGo, Air India and SpiceJet have barred Kunal Kamra from flying on their aircraft.
The 1.51-minute video posted by Kunal on Twitter shows Arnab seated on the flight wearing shades and earphones, as Kunal questions him about his journalistic ethics. āI'm asking coward Arnab Goswami questions about his journalism and he is doing exactly what I expected him to do... is being a coward. First he called me mentally unstable and now heās saying, āIām watching something.āā Later he asks, āAre you a coward or are you a journalist?ā The video has over 2.6 million views.