In 2014 Hindu Human Rights was contacted by the BBC regarding the need for a Hindu point of view on a controversy taking place in India. Now this was for a live news broadcast on the BBC News channel. For almost a decade that recording has been lost. The BBC have varied between being evasive about it to outright denial.
They were extremely keen to hush it up. What was it about the interview with HHR that they were so keen should not go public? What secrets about the BBC does it reveal? Now 8 years on, despite the best efforts of the BBC to deny it, that video recording has resurfaced. It is only available in part but does show that the event did indeed take place. To anyone who thought control of the information war was decided by bog tech and powerful media as being just another wild conspiracy theory, the truth is not just out there. It is actually worse than imagined.
In February 2014, Penguin Books India has said that it would destroy all available copies of the 2009 book by the leftist neo-colonialist writer Wendy Doniger, The Hindus: An Alternative History, as part of a court settlement. Following the book’s publication, Dinanath Batra of the Hindu group Shiksha Bachao Andolan (Save Education Campaign) filed a suit against the author and publisher for denigration of Hinduism. In the notice sent by his lawyer in 2010, Batra accused Doniger of “a shallow, distorted and non-serious presentation of Hinduism” which was “riddled with heresies and factual inaccuracies”.
Lucy Hockings of BBC World News unsurprisingly invited Doniger onto her programme in which she was given generous time to push across her propaganda in the same manner in which William Joyce (Lord Haw Haw) was given by Germany in the war to pump unopposed Nazi venom across the radio into wartime Britain.
Prior to this William Dalrymple, fellow neo-colonialist masquerading as a ‘friend’ of Indian culture was allowed the same, warning of the dangers of the extreme right-wing Hindu fundamentalist BJP taking power. It did in any case.
Now on finishing the interview with Doniger, Hockings said she was trying to get the viewpoint of the BJP. It was at this point that Hindu Human Rights was contacted to be asked if they would speak on the BBC. With several phones calls and emails back and forth the BBC undercover agent said it was on the BBC World Service radio programme. It was only on getting to the studio that afternoon that I realised with the microphone clip being put on that this was actually for a live television broadcast.
On sitting down next to Hockings I was shown a clip of the interview with Doniger where she smugly said if nobody liked the book, well all they had to do was not read it. The battle lines were drawn. Doniger and Dalrymple were on the side of freedom of speech, I was being put into the category of the right-wing Hindu extremist who was crushing it. As Hockings was to find out this was far from reality.
I mentioned to Hockings that in 2003 at SOAS (School of Oriental and African Studies), Doniger had again chosen to vilify Hinduism by sexualising it at every opportunity. Who was chairing this talk? None other than Dalrymple himself. Doniger quickly shut down any criticism from a lady in the audience that she was vilifying Hindus.
Things took a much nastier turn when Lord Bagri, who had sponsored the event, became physically violent with the same lady from the audience. So I asked Lucy where was the freedom of speech then? Hockings was quick to dismiss it saying it was 9 years previously, obviously not expecting this type of information to be so embarrassingly aired on live television, to which I had only been invited to be taken in by the trap set. But the tables had turned.
If anyone it was the likes of neo-colonialists such as Doniger and Dalrymple who shut down freedom of speech by calling anything Hindu as extremist, fascist, fundamentalist or overtly sexually perverted. At that same event an egg was thrown by a disgruntled member of the audience, making a splat on the wall behind both of the partners in crime. Dalrymple glanced behind him and said “BJP”. Now considering that same party won power after the interview which Hockings conducted, was there a sudden epidemic in eggs being thrown?
But back to the main issue here. I explained to Hockings that as the oldest surviving indigenous body of polytheists, Hindus were being constantly vilified and denigrated in the western narrative. Unless there was actual dialogue, the issues of censorship and debate on freedom of expression would continue and only get worse.
Hockings was largely polite. I did however appreciate the view of the nice man who fitted the microphone who said that it was good that Hindus were at last speaking back. Of course none of this fitted the agenda of the BBC anymore than the only free election to take part in revolutionary Russia after Lenin took power suited the aims of the Bolsheviks. While the interviews of Doniger and Dalrymple have been freely available on yotube, the one with Hindu Human Rights was destroyed. Repeated emails and phone calls when unanswered. Complaints were lost in the Kafkaesque nightmare of opaque BBC bureaucracy. That is until now!
We have American journalist Christian P Bryant to thank for keeping the video evidence on the Newsy channel on you tube
It is fortunate then that with independent, brave journalism to break through the Newspeak and propaganda of media giants such as the BBC who on issues concerning Hindus cannot be trusted to report the truth.