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On media boycott row, Assam CM’s ‘moon’ jibe at Congress: ‘I will send entire…’

Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Saturday termed the opposition bloc’s decision to boycott 14 news anchors “childish”, saying the move was not new and can be traced back to the Emergency era. Sarma warned that the media will get censored if the Congress party comes to power.

Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma.(PTI)

“This boycott and media censorship can be traced back to 1975. It is not new. It is a rehearsal for you. For any reason, if the Congress government comes to power, the media will get censored,” he told reporters in Jabalpur.

Taking a swipe at the Congress party, he added, “But ISRO has made the Chandrayaan at the right time. I will send the entire Congress party to the moon, to form government there…This is childish…”

The media sub-group of the 28-party bloc released a list of 14 news anchors whom they will boycott for alleged bias in their coverage of the opposition and hate speech. This effectively means INDIA will neither send representatives to their shows nor invite them to any political events of the coalition.

BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra on Friday said the opposition alliance has attacked every institution in the country, wondering if the list of anchors is more a “target list” or “hit list” aimed at targeting them with FIRs.

The Congress, however, maintained that the opposition has not boycotted anyone and has rather decided not to cooperate with those spreading hatred in the society. Congress’s media and publicity head Pawan Khera called it a “non-cooperation movement”, adding that they may reverse the decision if the named news anchors do the course correction.

“We have not banned, boycotted or blacklisted anyone. This is a non-cooperation movement, we will not cooperate with anyone spreading hatred in the society…They are not our enemies. Nothing is permanent, if tomorrow they realise that what they were doing is not good for India, we will again start attending their shows,” Khera told reporters in Hyderabad.

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