Guv Khan raises suspicion over releasing BBC documentary when India assumed G20 presidency

Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan speaks during an interview at the Kerala House in New Delhi. Photo: PTI

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan on Wednesday expressed suspicion about the timing of the release of the controversial BBC documentary, 'India: The Modi Question', saying it has come at a time when India has assumed the presidency of the G20.

Khan, speaking to reporters here, also said that he is surprised that people are attaching more importance to the opinion of a foreign documentary maker, "that too our colonial masters", than the verdict of the highest court of the land.

"So many judicial verdicts, including that of the highest court of the land, the timing, all these things have to be taken into consideration. This is a time when India has assumed the G20 presidency.

"Why has this particular time been chosen to bring out this scurrilous material? You cannot ignore these things and particularly when it is coming from a source who ruled over us for over 200 years," the Governor said.

He said the intent behind the release of the documentary was to "make India fall into pieces".

Khan further said that the British had predicted at the time of India's independence that it was not capable of preserving its freedom.

"So when such comments (documentary) come from people like them, one has to take it with a pinch of salt," he said.

The governor contended that they (the British) thought India would break into pieces after independence and would not be able to maintain its unity due to its diversity.

"Now they see India emerging in the world scene. Not only that, a person of Indian origin is their Prime Minister.

Therefore, they want to use every opportunity, rather create or invent opportunities to lower the esteem of India.

"I do not think this issue needs to be discussed any more. It should be treated with the contempt it deserves," Khan said.

The documentary was screened in various places, including colleges, in the state on Tuesday with the BJP youth wing going up in arms in protest against the screenings.

The Centre had last week directed the blocking of multiple YouTube videos and Twitter posts sharing links to the documentary.

The two-part BBC documentary, which claims it investigated certain aspects relating to the 2002 Gujarat riots when Prime Minister Narendra Modi was the chief minister of that state, has been trashed by the Ministry of External Affairs as a "propaganda piece" that lacked objectivity and reflected a "colonial mindset".

(With PTI inputs)

The comments posted here/below/in the given space are not on behalf of Onmanorama. The person posting the comment will be in sole ownership of its responsibility. According to the central government's IT rules, obscene or offensive statement made against a person, religion, community or nation is a punishable offense, and legal action would be taken against people who indulge in such activities.