A video in which student leader and activist Shehla Rashid is seen asking a Republic reporter to get out of the Press Club where she was making a public speech has solicited several positive and negative comments on the social media.
And as the debate raged, Okhla-based independent journalist Asad Ashraf in a social media post wrote that he regretted booing Arnab Goswami’s reporter at Jamia Millia Islamia in 2016.
“We would be the first one to disapprove Republic and Arnab as news channels and journalists. I would have sued Arnab for what he did with me in his studio while he was in Times Now. But due to lack of resources, I couldn’t do that.
“In frustration I have booed them at Jamia in the past but this journalist who was then at a news channel for which Arnab worked called me to ask that why did I do that with him? He was scolded at office for not having gotten the bites he was supposed to.
“I regretted that day. Since then I made it clear that I will never insult a reporter irrespective of the organisation s/he belongs to. If you have the courage to do so, go and stop Republic from getting broadcasted, sue Arnab for carrying out propaganda in the name of journalism but do not insult reporters like that in front of their own fraternity, they are not the bourgeois, they are the workers doing that for a meager salary,” wrote Asad on his timeline soliciting several positive as well as negative comments.
Dubai-based journalist Bobby Naqvi wrote: “An attempt is being to discredit Shehla Rashid after she asked a Republic reporter to get out of the Press Club where she was making a public speech. Some liberals say Shehla has no right to insult a “poor” reporter who was simply doing his job.
“I am writing this to disagree with this view. First of all, asking a reporter to leave is not an insult at all. I have been told to “get out” a number of times and never felt insulted. The reporter can chose to stay or leave. I have seen the video of her speech and the reporter stayed at the press club.
“Now, was Shehla justified in her public outburst against the reporter? The answer to this question can’t be a short yes or no. I am sure people remember the campaign mounted by Arnab Goswami (Times Now) against a group of JNU students, including Shehla Rashid. His channel’s hostile coverage shaped public opinion against the university and students. Many were jailed and false cases were mounted against them.
“Therefore, personally it is hard for me to sympathise with Republic reporters even though they belong to my tribe of professionals. The argument that they “are poor and simply doing their jobs” is childish and deserves no attention
“Back to Shehla, she is doing a marvelous job in the field chosen by her. Disclaimer: I have never met Shehla or interacted with her and I am not a Leftist….”
DISCLAIMER: The views expressed in the post are of the journalists