Arnab Goswami’s WhatsApp leaks expose ties with Government
Arnab Goswami’s WhatsApp chat leaks exposed his ties with the ruling BJP government as the chats revealed Goswami allegedly informing former BARC CEO Partho Dasgupta that former I&B Minister, Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, had brushed aside the complaints against Republic TV. The chats also claimed that Dasgupta was trying to get the role of ‘media advisor’ in the PMO through the senior journalist, in exchange for TRP favor.
All the chats and details are currently being reviewed for their authenticity as part of the ongoing investigations by the Mumbai Police Crime Branch to unfurl the Republic TV- TRP scandal. But what escalated the issue further, were the series of WhatsApp chats that claimed that Goswami had access to information regarding the Balakot strike.
“The incident has damaged his reputation for sure. National security is an important issue and such chats have only shown that even for Arnab, all this was for petty TRPs. The kind of relations he enjoyed with the party and the government will certainly get altered,” said a senior BJP leader.
The issue was raised by Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, who accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of leaking sensitive information regarding India’s plans of launching an airstrike on Balakot in Pakistan in 2019, to a ‘journalist’. Gandhi said that the authorities breached the Official Secrets Act, stating that someone out of the ‘five people’ who had the information about the strike, would have leaked it to the ‘journalist’ who was ‘busy telling other people’ ‘three days ahead” of Balakot strike.
Former Congress President, who is currently on a three-day visit to Tamil Nadu, demanded an inquiry into the matter. He said that the matter of concern was that if the information was on (Arnab’s) WhatsApp, then enemy forces could also access the same.
BJP national spokesperson slammed Congress for connecting the leaks with the Balakot strike, and instead demanded attention towards more important issues including the Union Budget, which is scheduled to be presented in the Parliament on January 29.
Singh said, “Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced in a rally that there would be a reaction after Pulwama happened, and any journalist could have put two and two together. In his speech, the PM had made it clear that India will retaliate. So the question of a leak (to Arnab Goswami) doesn’t arise.”
“This is not rocket science, as the opposition is trying to make it appear. Our PM always announces everything, whether it is demonetisation or surgical strike. The opposition is trying to make everything an issue. We should concentrate on the Budget,” Singh added.
Like Singh, other BJP also adopted a similar stand over the issue preferring to focus on the economic recovery and farmers issue and other major challenges at hand, over the Republic TV’s editor-in-chief’s, ‘WhatsApp scandal’. BJP national spokesperson Gopal Agarwal said: “Talk about agriculture, economy and on the Budget.”
BJP MP and another national spokesperson Aparajita Sarangi added: “The opposition is free to discuss anything, but they should respect the business advisory committee that decides on what should be the agenda. The Modi government believes in positive governance and would want everyone, including the opposition, to be part of it. The opposition should not use this platform to run their agenda”.