Ep. 11: Going undercover in Gujarat feat. Ashish Khetan
This week on The Wire Talks, host Sidharth Bhatia is joined by investigative reporter Ashish Khetan, whose new book 'Undercover: My Journey into the Darkness of Hindutva' describes his many forays into Gujarat. He visited the state several times to meet and interview those who were involved with the brutal Gujarat violence of 2002, during which over 1,000 people were killed, majority of which were Muslims. Ashish, who was reporting for Tehelka in those days, had to resort to any number of tricks to meet the people involved, people who never gave interviews otherwise. The results, however, were great, with many of these people getting convicted, which shows the importance of good honest old-fashioned journalism.
On this episode, Sidharth talks to Ashish about good old-fashioned journalism and it's importance in today's times, the 2002 riots of Gujarat, the Godhra Train Burning on 2002 and the narratives that formed around the incident, what Ashish considers as the two turning points of recent Indian journalism, why he had to go undercover as a Hindu fanatic to talk to these rioters and conspirators, the deep-seated hatred that all the perpetrators shared for Muslims (and other minorities), the kinds of 'false facts' that were spread about Muslims, why it seemed like the police and the CBI did not do their job aptly and why our institutions and authorities completely failed during the riots, whether the ere the perpetrators were any different on the ground than what we saw on the news, and lots lots more. Tune in for a hair-raising and eye-opening episode, an indeed must listen.
Follow Ashish on Twitter: https://twitter.com/AashishKhetan
Follow Sidharth Bhatia on Twitter and Instagram @bombaywallah
https://twitter.com/bombaywallah and https://instagram.com/bombaywallah
You can listen to this show on The Wire's website, the IVM Podcasts website, app on Android: https://ivm.today/android or iOS: https://ivm.today/ios, or any other podcast app.