Shourie, Yashwant Sinha, Yogendra Yadav Slam I-T Raid at The Quint
Expressing outrage over the I-T raid conducted at the offices of The Quint and at the residence of its founder Raghav Bahl and CEO Ritu Kapur, former Union Minister Arun Shourie said:
“These raids and inspections and all are absolutely outrageous. I’ve known Raghav Bahl for almost 25 years and I don’t think I know of another person who’s more committed to the highest ethical and professional standards than Raghav.
Secondly, a raid or a prosecution or a persecution by a government that lies every other day, actually everyday, is the certificate that The Quint and Raghav and his team are speaking the truth.
And third, that it is proof of the fact that the work The Quint is doing is important and effective. It’s the voice that the government feels must be silenced. And the work that they know, or have gotten to know or apprehend that The Quint is now in the process of completing and which they will now broadcast or put out in the coming days is something that is of crucial importance for the country and would be fatally ruinous for the government.
So in all these respects I think the raid is a proof of the importance of the work that The Quint is doing and of the effectiveness of its reach. And it is absolutely foolish of this government or for any government to think that such intimidation can silence or will silence the Press.
There’s a wonderful line of Faiz. He says:
‘Dast he sayyad bhi aajiz hai kaff-e-gulchi’n bhi, bu-e-gul thehri na bulbul ki awaaz thehri hai.’ (The hand of the hunter is poised. It will release the arrow which will kill the bird. And so is the hand of the gardener who will pluck the flower and thereby kill it. The hand of the hunter is poised, the hand of the gardener is poised, but the flower has not stopped giving out its fragrance and neither has the bulbul stopped its song.)
So it is absolutely foolish for the government to think that first it will do something to NDTV, then they will do something to Raghav Bahl and his operation at The Quint and this will silence the media or even more important, silence the information from spreading and being excavated.
So I wish Raghav and his team the best and I compliment them for the fact that they’ve been chosen for persecution.”
Very Few Fearless Voices Left in The Media: Yashwant Sinha
Former Union Minister Yashwant Sinha also condemned the raids, saying that Raghav Bahl is one of those few mediapersons who is not afraid of criticising the government.
Raids on The Quint an Attempt to Silence Free Voices?: Yashwant Sinha
Condemning the I-T raids at The Quint’s premises in Noida, Swaraj Party president Yogendra Yadav questioned if it could be percieved as an attempt to “silence free voices” in the Indian media.
A short video tweeted by Yadav showed a montage of the various videos that had been produced by The Quint – questioning demonetisation, the status of villages adopted by ministers, and on the ‘Startup India’ initiative.
The video ends with Yadav calling the raids an “attack on the 4th pillar of democracy”, calling for people to speak up.