Hate speech against Pakistanis: UK media watchdog fines Arnab’s Republic TV £20,000

United Kingdom’s media regulator Ofcom has fined India’s Republic TV approximately £20,000 for broadcasting content that involved offensive language and hate speech against the people of Pakistan, Scroll.in reported.

The Hindi news channel has also been directed to air an apology on the channel.

In its statement, the Ofcom announced that it has fined Republic TV for using “highly offensive hate speech against Pakistani people” over an episode of Poochta Hai Bharat, hosted by Arnab Goswani, in which seriously offensive terms were used for the people of Pakistan.

The Republic Bharat channel broadcasts rolling news and current affairs to the Hindi speaking community in the UK like dozens of Indian and Pakistani news and entertainment channels.

As per details, the programme Poochta Hai Bharat, which was aired on July 22, 2019, featured a debate between Arnab Goswami, and his guests that included three Indian and three Pakistani individuals.

The talk show featured debate on India’s attempt to send the spacecraft Chandrayaan 2 on its mission to the moon, India’s record of space exploration and other technological advancements in comparison to Pakistan’s, the Kashmir issue, and Pakistan’s “alleged involvement in terrorist activities against Indian targets”.

During the programme, the presenter and some of his guests conveyed the view that all Pakistani people are “terrorists”, including their scientists, doctors, their leaders, politicians. One Indian guest also described Pakistani scientists as “thieves”, while another described Pakistani people as “beggars”.

The Ofcom took notice of the matter, saying: “We considered these statements to be expressions of hatred based on intolerance of Pakistani people based on their nationality alone, and that the broadcast of these statements spread, incited, promoted and justified such intolerance towards Pakistani people among viewers.”

Ofcom added that the tone of the entire debate was provocative and the Pakistani guests were repeatedly interrupted and given little time to make points.