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Rishi Sunak slams Pak-Origin MP over BBC series on PM Modi and 2002 riots.

Rishi Sunak slams Pak-Origin MP over BBC series on PM Modi and 2002 riots.

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The Ministry of Foreign Affairs also reacted to the BBC’s information.

London:

Defending Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the British Parliament, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak distanced himself from the BBC documentary series, saying he “disagrees with the characterization” of his Indian counterpart.

Mr Sunak made these remarks about the controversial documentary, which was raised in the British Parliament by Pakistani MP Imran Hussain.

“The UK Government’s position on this matter is clear and long-standing and has not changed, of course we do not tolerate persecution where it appears anywhere, but I am not sure that I agree at all with the characterization that the honorable gentleman has put forward ” he said while responding to Hussain’s question in the BBC report.

The UK’s national broadcaster BBC aired a two-part series attacking Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s tenure as Chief Minister of Gujarat during the Gujarat riots of 2002. The documentary sparked outrage and was pulled from select platforms.

Prominent British citizens of Indian origin condemned the series. Eminent UK citizen Lord Rami Ranger said “BBC has caused a lot of pain to over one billion Indians”.

Condemning the BBC’s biased coverage, Rami tweeted: “@BBCNews You have caused a lot of pain to over a billion Indians. This insults the democratically elected @PMOIndia Indian Police and Indian Judiciary. We condemn the riots and loss of life and I also condemn your biased coverage.”

The Foreign Office also reacted to the BBC report and said it was a completely biased copy.

While speaking at a weekly briefing in New Delhi, MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said, “We believe this is propaganda material. This has no objectivity. This is biased. Note that this has not been screened in India. We don’t want to answer any more on this matter so it doesn’t get a lot of dignity.”

He even raised questions about “the purpose of the teaching and the agenda behind it.”

“The documentary is a reflection of the agency and the individuals who are re-propagating this narrative. This makes us wonder about the purpose of the exercise and the agenda behind it; frankly, we really want to respect those efforts,” he added.

Referring to apparent remarks made by former UK minister Jack Straw in the documentary series, Bagchi said: “He (Jack Straw) seems to be referring to some internal UK report. How do I access it? This is a 20 year old report .. Why throw it away now? Just because Jack says it, how is he given so much legitimacy.

“I heard words like investigation and investigation. There is a reason we use colonial thinking. We don’t use words loosely. What investigation were they diplomats there… investigation, are they running the country? Bagchi asked.

(Except for the headline, this story was not edited by NDTV staff and was published by a syndicated channel.)

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