Lord Rami Ranger, a prominent member of the House of Lords of the UK Parliament, has lodged a protest with the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) over its documentary series on Prime Minister Narendra Modi. In a letter to Tim Davie, Director General of the BBC, Lord Ranger condemned the documentary and raised questions on its “sinister” timing. The following is the text of the letter:
I am appalled by the documentary produced by the BBC implicating the Hon. Prime Minister of India in the Gujarat riots of 2002 aired on 17 th January 2023. The producer has shown a lack of vision, common sense and judgement by producing such an insensitive one-sided documentary.
The documentary not only insults the two times democratically elected Prime Minister of the largest democracy in the world but also the judiciary and Parliament, which Investigated Mr Modi rigorously, and exonerated him from being involved in the riots in any way.
I condemn violence and loss of life wherever it takes place, and I equally condemn those stirring up religious hatred in the United Kingdom by bringing up the politics of the subcontinent to the United Kingdom. We have one King and Country and, as a result are one. No one has the right to divide us for cheap popularity with egregious journalism, which can have dire consequences for the nation in the long run.
As the chairman of the PakistanIndian & UK friendship Forum, we have worked for over 25 years to build bridges between two British communities, namely of Indian and Pakistani origin, to improve social cohesion in the United Kingdom. The BBC documentary has opened old wounds by creating hatred between British Hindus and Muslims by attempting to paint India as an intolerant nation where Muslims are persecuted. If this had been the case, the Muslims would have left India by now. On the contrary, the Muslim population of India is now more than Pakistan’s, and the Muslims of Bangladesh are entering India on a large scale.
It is worth remembering the history; the British divided us arbitrarily without any referendum and caused the death of over a million innocent people and made over 15 million refugees In the country of their birth. The British generated such hatred that led to three more bloody wars with more loss of life, andnow India and Pakistan are nuclear adversaries. Should you not make a documentary to take responsibility for the bloodshed that continues unabated? How about the famine in Bengal and the massacre of innocent people in Jallianwala Bagh? For the record, diversity is accepted, respected and protected by laws in India. The Indian constitution accords equality to all regardless of race, religion, and gender. I cannot say the same for Pakistan, where equality is not accorded to people of other faiths or women.
I urge you to stop screening the second part to avoid exasperating the already tense situation between British Hindus and Muslims in many of our cities.
The timing of this documentary is sinister; when India assumed the Presidency of G20, we have our first Prime Minister of Indian origin in No. 10, and we are working for the UKlndia free-trade agreement. Kindly confirm if your Pakistani-origin staff were behind this nonsense.
I await your reply