Most of us must have read comments that the highly unfortunate rape of an elderly Nun in Kolkata was being politicized and that the Archbishop has given it a communal angle. Unfortunately, the media has again spun the Archbishop’s statement and sensationalized it. Check this report (edit: Indian Express has surreptitiously changed a part of its story now, see the original story here. But the spin has not been changed ) in the Indian Express which is titled “Nun Gang Rape Case: Archbishop clears Mamata, blames Modi govt for rising violence against minorities”. Fact: Archbishop has given no clean chit to any Government and has also staunchly refused to politicize or communalize the issue.
Indian Express quotes the Archbishop as saying “Although the CBI probe and the detention of some people is a welcome start, we are not happy because there hasn’t been much headway in this regard. We urge the government to arrest the culprits soon and ascertain the motives” and that the “state administration and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee have taken “prompt steps” after the attack.”
The first interesting point is the use of the word “CBI” because CBI is a national body. Also because The Hindu, Huffington Post India and the Times of India mention only a “CID” probe is going on, and BJP and others are STILL asking for a CBI probe. Has Indian Express deliberately used “CBI” instead of “CID” to somehow show that the Archbishop is unhappy with the “CBI” (a national body) and thus unhappy with the Central Government? Because if he is unhappy with CID, then the question of “clearing Mamata” fades away.
Also this propaganda that Mamata has been cleared by the Archbishop falls flat on its face because as NDTV reports, even last evening, Mamata’s convoy was blocked for almost an hour by angry crowds, demanding justice for the nun. The same report further quotes the Archbishop as saying “We are not happy. We appreciate the chief minister’s efforts but the culprits must be arrested. That is yet to happen.” In such a scenario, how did Indian Express come to the conclusion that Mamata had been cleared by the Archbishop?
Secondly, the Archbishop had also said “The instances of violence on the minority community have gone up across the state since this new (BJP) government came to power at the Centre,”. This statement has been used by all and sundry to politicize and communalize the Rape. But comically, even Times of India who has given a similar angle to it, clearly says that this statement was as a reply to a question from a journalist AND most importantly also says:
But the Archbishop was careful not to link the Ranaghat horror to such attacks on minorities. “We want to know the truth behind attack. Before the culprits are nabbed and the motive revealed, it is not right to conclude that the attack was targeted at the community. Arresting those involved is very important so that the truth emerges,” the Archbishop said
From the above it is absolutely clear that the Archbishop never tried to communalise the issue. He made it crystal clear that “it is not right to conclude that the attack was targeted at the community”. It is highly unfair to the Archbishop to twist and cut-paste his statements to create an image that he has communalized or politicized such a sensitive issue. Such nefarious activities can be expected from Politicians, but for Indian Express to do this is absolutely disgusting and unacceptable.
(Thanks to @ for bringing this to our notice)