Republic TV's Arnab Goswami
Republic TV's Arnab Goswami

India's biggest news channel by viewership, Republic Bharat has run into trouble in the UK for broadcasting content that had "uncontextualised hate speech" in violation of the Ofcom Broadcasting Code. To this end, a £20,000 fine was imposed on Worldview Media Network Limited by the regulatory body. The broadcast in question was an a September 2019 episode of Republic Bharat's Poochta Hai Bharat show in Hindi.

For the uninitiated, Worldview Media Network is the business partner of Republic TV in the UK and the USA. Republic Bharat TV is the sister channel to Arnab Goswami's Republic TV which broadcasts news primarily in English. According to reports, the Hindi channel has done well in the UK and appears to be popular among Indian news consumers.

The news has left the internet rather divided. While fans of Arnab Goswami and those who admire the channel have launched a vigorous defence, claiming that the UK was afraid of the channel's popularity, many others are horrified.

While some remarks centre around the ethical violation, others contend that the incident showcases India poorly in a foreign land. Many have since taken it upon themselves to censure Goswami on Twitter. In the absence of any Twitter handle for the scribe his name has now turned into a trending hashtag.

The posts under this hashtag however are a tad confusing. While a large majority of the comments pertaining to the Ofcom fine are critical of Goswami, we also have some unique theories cropping up. At the same time, the fact that "#ArnabGoswami" is trending has been enough for some to jump in with wholly unrelated posts.

"Uk is afraid of Arnab's Republic network as it's gaining popularity globally... So in frustration they are doing such cheap things," proclaimed one user.

"India stands with Arnab Goswami," proclaimed another user. Others still took to Twitter wondering whether the UK had any authority or jurisdiction to fine a channel broadcasting in their country.

Take a look at some of the comments:

(To download our E-paper please click here. The publishers permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)

Free Press Journal

www.freepressjournal.in