From New Delhi to Nagpur, there is great consternation over the British communications regulator, Ofcom, slapping one of Bharat’s greatest television channels with a 20,000 pound fine for running ‘hate speech’ against Pakistanis. What has galled our leaders is that the fine has come despite the fact that the Hindi channel has repeatedly apologised for the so-called ‘hate speech.’
Accordingly, the National Image Management Group was directed to deliberate and synergise on options available to the government.
The meeting was held on Thursday evening at an undisclosed location in New Delhi, with a quorum four – RHM (Raisina Hill man); NREP (Nagpur Representative); DEF (Defence establishment voice); and, DSA (Deep state agent).
Here are the minutes:
DEF: I have been asked to convey the deep sense of indignation the Hon’ble Raksha Mantri has felt. He has asserted more than once that there can be no compromise with India’s self-pride. This British ruling is nothing but an attempt to suppress the voice of New India. The New India will not stand for this. The British must know their place. Our resources are available if we need to retaliate against the goras and show them their place.
NREP: Our baudhiks [intellectuals] are at a loss to understand what exactly is our foreign ministry doing. These fancy diplomats are busy wasting time arranging medals from a defeated American President, rather than protect Bharat’s atma-sammaan. If a Hindu Indian channel cannot abuse Muslim Pakistanis, what is the use of all these grand diplomatic successes we keep reading about in the newspapers? First, we allow the British foreign secretary to come here and assert on our soil that our internal matters are matter of concern to them also – and, he is allowed to go unmolested. Now, comes this fine on Bharat. Unacceptable.
DSA: Our considered view is that we should not allow ourselves to feel all that rattled. Let us keep our cool. This is a game played the world over: we probe and probe, and if challenged we make a tactical retreat. Those savvy generals in Rawalpindi are playing this game all the time yet have managed to protect, with determination and perseverance, all their assets. And, after all, what is 20,000 pounds. Peanuts. Just peanuts. Funds are available, funds can be made available. Pay the fine and move on. Important thing is that our assets should not be allowed to feel shaken or feel they have been abandoned. They must not lose faith in their brief.
RHM: We are inclined to suggest we should use our leverage with the British; all these military purchases we make from them. That gives us a bargaining chip. Our foreign office should issue a demarche to the British that they must find a way of providing a face saver to Bharat. The channel is too important an element in our long-term design and its credibility and its image cannot be allowed to be so openly questioned and belittled. The British cannot be allowed to get away with this diplomatic bakwaas [poppycock] that Ofcom is an independent institution. What nonsense! Independent institutions? There’s no such thing. Go, tell it to the birds.
DEF: If we are inclined to feel so strongly, then one easily available option is that we smoke out the British agents we have allowed to operate so comfortably in our country. But, then, those slimy Brits have a nasty way of retaliating; worse they are good that feeding those English newspapers with dirt about us dating back to days before 1947, which may cast doubt on our nationalist credentials.
NREP: We are not afraid of the old history. Our past record and mistakes cannot be allowed to slow us down now in our present national endeavour to bring glory and pride to Bharatvarsh. Why do we need listen to these English, even after 70 years? This slur on the Bharat channel cannot be allowed to go unchallenged. We must stand for our national dignity and national pride and insist on our right to say whatever we feel has to be said about this or that country and its people. This is what aatma-sammaan is all about.
DEF: I think I can speak for our superiors. Who are these firangis to tell us what our boys will tell or not tell our people and the world. We would be perfectly justified to tell London in clear, plain language: withdraw the fine on our channel or Prime Minister Boris Johnson visit next month stands jeopardised. Let us learn to be tough ass.
These sentiments have been conveyed to the One and Only One who alone can make the final call.
Atmanirbhar is a pen-name for an aspiring satirist, who shall be irregularly contributing a column, From the Vishwavguru Archives, and believes that ridicule and humour are central to freedom to speech and expression.