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New Delhi: Navika Kumar of ‘Times Now’ has been named in a first information report (FIR) three weeks after now-suspended Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) spokesperson Nupur Sharma made derogatory remarks against Prophet Mohammad, which have kicked up a huge row, during a primetime news show which she hosted, Newslaundry has reported.
The FIR filed, based on a complaint by a Muslim cleric from Maharashtra’s Parbhani, at the Nanalpet Police Station accused Kumar of maliciously intending to outrage religious feelings.
After Sharma’s comments led to massive outrage both in India and outside, Times Now issued a statement on May 27 distancing itself from the controversial remarks. “We urge participants on our debates to maintain restraint and not indulge in unparliamentary language against fellow panelists,” the channel said in a statement.
In addition to Sharma, Kumar has faced criticism over her handling of ‘debates’, after the controversial remarks against the Prophet led to a diplomatic outrage from the Arab world and massive protests in India.
Even the Editors Guild of India has come out to question TV channels like Times Now for “giving legitimacy to toxic voices”.
In fact, this is not the first time when Times Now has come under such criticism and also sought to distance itself from the remarks made by speakers on the shows hosted by Kumar.
In November 2021, the comments made by Kangana Ranaut sparked a controversy. Ranaut had said what India got in 1947 was “bheekh” and that “true independence” was gained only in 2014, when the BJP under Narendra Modi assumed power.
Ranaut remarks had sparked outrage even from BJP leaders who termed them as “an insult to millions of freedom fighters”.