During the Corona period last year, the News Broadcasting Standard Authority (NBSA) has taken action on three news channels in the case of objectionable reporting on Tabligh Jamaat. NBSA has imposed fines against three news channels for wrong reporting against Tabligh Jamaat and also directed them to apologise. It is to be known that last year under a propaganda, Tablig Jamaat was accused of spreading corona by all the news channels.
In the midst of the Corona epidemic in the country last year, the News Broadcasting Standard Authority has taken action against the news channels run irresponsibly on Markaz and Tabligh Jamaat. NBSA has also taken this action on English news channel Times Now and two Kannada channels – News 18 Kannada and Suvarna News.
Taking action, the NBSA has imposed a fine of Rs 1 lakh on Times Now and News18 Kannada and Rs 50,000 on Suvarna News, the regional Kannada channel, and also ordered an apology on June 23. NBSA has also ordered that all the web portals have also directed to remove the videos. NBSA has also ordered to deposit the fine within seven days.
The NBSA has taken this action on the basis of complaints filed by the Campaign Against Hate Speech. The Campaign Against Hate Speech had objected to the program run on Tabligh Jamaat. NBSA Chairman Retired Justice AK Sikri said in the order that the manner in which the programs were presented was highly objectionable and baseless and added that the news reports circulated were based on conjecture.
NBSA President Retired Justice AK Sikri has issued a condemnation for telecasting such programs and also called such programs creating communal differences between the two communities. Justice AK Sikri in his order said that the anchor of the program had made certain statements related to Tablighi Jamaat which could create communal differences between the two communities.
NBSA in its order clearly stated that the language of the program broadcast by news channels on Tabligh Jamaat was indecent. The language of the news channels was provocative and tried to disregard religious sentiments and break the structure of social harmony. News channels tried to incite by creating social rifts.
Times Now aired the program ‘Is Tablighi Jamaat deliberately sabotaging India’ in a panel discussion. The Bengaluru-based Campaign Against Hate Speech had filed a complaint with the News Broadcasting Standard Authority about the event. In the complaint filed with NBSA, the Campaign Against Hate Speech had spoken of inciting communal differences between the two communities and spreading hatred among Muslims in the society.
In 2020, when the country was in a state of panic due to corona infection, the media targeted the Tablig Jamaat’s Markaz in Nizamuddin, Delhi, where people who attended a religious program were held responsible for spreading the corona. The Muslims of the country were targeted by various news channels through biased coverage. Hate was spread against the Muslim community by doing programs against Tabligh Jamaat by various news channels.
After the onset of COVID-19 in the country, various media houses had blamed the Tablighi Jamaat for the spread of coronavirus in the country. Many media channels had even told it to ‘Corona Jihad’, blaming Muslims. People associated with Tabligh Jamaat were arrested, although everyone was later acquitted by the court.