Delhi police detain students watching BBC documentary on Modi; protests against censorship.
In recent days, students in India have faced disruption and even violence while gathering to watch a BBC documentary about Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The documentary, titled “India: The Modi Question”, questions Modi’s leadership during deadly riots two decades ago and has been blocked from streaming and sharing on social media by the Indian government, who have called it propaganda.
Protests and disruptions have been reported from campuses across India, including at Delhi’s Jamia Millia Islamia university, where 13 students were detained, and at Jawaharlal Nehru University, where bricks were allegedly thrown by members of a right-wing group. The BBC has defended the documentary, claiming it was “rigorously researched according to highest editorial standards” and featured a range of opinion.
The violence and disruption has been condemned by many, including opposition MP Derek O’Brien, who has called for an end to censorship and for the documentary to be screened on campuses across the country. The Students’ Federation of India (SFI) has announced plans to show the documentary in every Indian state.
The events have highlighted the ongoing tension between India’s Hindu majority and Muslim minority, and the increasing suppression of free speech in the country. Modi is currently seeking a third term in India’s upcoming elections and the documentary has raised questions of government censorship and the right to free speech.
The clashes between students and authorities have sparked a debate in India over the right to free speech and expression. The Indian government’s decision to block the documentary and the subsequent disruption of student gatherings has caused widespread concern and raised questions about the government’s commitment to upholding the rights of its citizens. It remains to be seen whether the protests and disruptions will continue or if the government will relent and allow the documentary to be shown.