In a surprising call coming from an ‘expert’ panel from the United Nations, the Indian government has been advised to protect independent journalist Rana Ayyub. The UN experts believe that Rana Ayyub is facing threats from some elements of the society who are affiliated with right wing political parties. This selective approach by the UN ‘expert’ panel has surprised everyone in India. These so called experts were nowhere to be found when targeted killings of reporters were being carried out in West Bengal. Their silence on the killings of RSS workers in Karnataka and Kerala too raises suspicions over how well-informed they really are with the happenings in India. The right wing party workers face violence and abuse on a daily basis in the states which are ruled by Leftist and other ‘secular’ parties. Unlike the cheap threats issued to Rana Ayyub on social media, the incidents involving right wing workers involve bloodshed committed in broad daylight. Nothing of that magnitude has been faced by Rana Ayyub or any other ‘liberal’ journalist in India, and the murder of Gauri Lankesh which was unsuccessfully pinned on BJP had no solid grounds.
Leftist party cadres in the country have caused massive damages to the framework of democracy in our country. Rana Ayyub might not have outright affiliations with any party but her Leftist leaning can be easily construed from her work. The attacks which began against her on social media platforms were cheap and vulgar in nature carried out by fringe elements. They should indeed be condemned and the perpetrators punished accordingly, but why the harm caused to her image should be placed over everything else which is taking place in non-BJP ruled states in India. What is the bigger evil, the death of unarmed political activists at the hands of politically backed goons, or threats given to someone over social media by stupid factions of the society? A difficult problem to find an answer to, but the ‘expert’ United Nations panel nonetheless took only a few days to pick a side.
Rana Ayyub is making the headlines today, reason being she is allegedly ‘liberal’ and ‘secular’. The political workers and press workers killed in West Bengal, Kerala and Karnataka were ‘communal’, or so the United Nations would want us to believe. The United Nations ‘experts’ panel is comprised of Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions Agnes Callamard, Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders Michel Forst, Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection the right to freedom of opinion and expression David Kaye, Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief Ahmed Shaheed and Special Rapporteur on violence against women Dubravka Imonovic. None of them have worked exclusively on India and they do not understand the minute details of the situation in India. Rana Ayyub’s article published on The New York Times was enough for them to urge the Indian government to protect the ‘secular’ lady reporter.
The women ‘expert’ from the United Nations panel was probably not aware that in TMC ruled West Bengal a women was publicly shamed and abused for demanding fair election process. Human rights defender ‘expert’ might have been asleep when numerous RSS workers were systematically targeted and killed in West Bengal, Kerala and Karnataka. The UN expert panel is as informed on situation in India as Congress ‘prodigy’ Rahul Gandhi is on any given topic. Funnily enough the UN in 2015 had appointed Saudi Arabia in the leadership slot of its Human Rights Council. Saudi Arabia has possibly the lowest track record of providing Human rights to its own citizens, the UN decision to appoint them in the HRC shows the seriousness which UN reserves for protection of Human Rights in the world. This move was widely criticized even at that point of time by countries all around the globe. It is important to discuss this today so as to reveal how the UN panels and councils have shaky credibility today and why their appeal to save Rana Ayyub should not be taken seriously. The UN panel simply lacks the knowledge of the ground reality in India, and their appeals are lacking in groundwork and full knowledge to say the least.