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Home / India / Modi Divider in Chief, says Time magazine, author Pakistani, says BJP

Modi Divider in Chief, says Time magazine, author Pakistani, says BJP

Taseer’s father is the late Salmaan Taseer, a Pakistani liberal politician who was shot dead by his guard for his opposition to the blasphemy law there
Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses an election rally in Prayagraj, on May 9, 2019.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses an election rally in Prayagraj, on May 9, 2019.
(AP)

Our Special Correspondent   |   New Delhi   |   Published 11.05.19, 09:13 PM

The BJP on Saturday chose to highlight columnist and author Aatish Taseer’s Pakistani lineage to question the credibility of his article on Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Time magazine titled “India’s Divider in Chief”.

Taseer’s father is the late Salmaan Taseer, a Pakistani liberal politician who was shot dead by his guard for his opposition to the blasphemy law there.

The columnist’s mother is veteran Indian journalist Tavleen Singh who has often supported Modi.

The Time cover story, which asks the question “Can the World’s Largest Democracy Endure Another Five Years of a Modi Government?”, had been widely discussed on social media and applauded by Modi’s political rivals like Mamata Banerjee.

The magazine has also published another article by political scientist Ian Bremmer, titled “Modi is India’s Best Hope for Economic Reform”.

On Saturday, the BJP fielded spokesperson Sambit Patra to suggest Taseer’s article in Time magazine was an indirect effort by Pakistan to malign Modi.

“Who is the author of the article?” Patra asked. “The author is a Pakistani citizen,” he replied. “A Pakistani citizen calls Modiji divider and Rahul Gandhi tweets. What else can we expect from Pakistan?” Patra added.

Recently, in response to a question by a former BBC journalist on whether an Indian magazine could have published such a cover, Tavleen Singh had tweeted: “You will find that it (the article by Aatish Taseer) is a critique of the Indian political scenario, not just Modi. He calls Rahul Gandhi ‘an unteachable mediocrity’. And, by the way, Modi has been attacked in the Indian media since day one.”

Patra sought to link the article to the surgical and air strikes in Pakistan. “The way India gave a firm response with two surgical strikes and air strikes on Balakot, Pakistan wants to malign Modiji’s image internationally,” he said.



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