Delhi Riots 2020: The Untold Story is a book that has attracted a lot of attention in recent times and it was supposed to be published by Bloomsbury India. It covers intricacies about the anti-CAA protests taken place in northeast Delhi in February 2020. The authors Monika Arora, Sonali Chitalkar, and Prerna Malhotra who are lawyers and educators by profession have been the part of social issues forever.
Story of February'2020 of Delhi Riots
It is most likely said that it was the hate speech of Kapil Mishra that instigated the mob as per the left-wing. Delhi riot is more about left- and right-wing politics than Hindus and Muslims. As claimed by the leftist media, it was the failure of the Delhi police which comes under the Home Ministry, meaning deposing BJP behind the violence. On February 22, about 1,000 people began a sit-in protest near the Jaffrabad metro station in Northeast Delhi, which blocked a stretch of Seelampur-Jaffrabad-Maujpur road, as well as the entry and exit to the metro station. The protest was reportedly in solidarity with the Bharat Bandh called by the Bhim Army, which was scheduled to begin on February 23.
Later on February 23, hours before the communal riots broke out in Northeast Delhi, BJP leader Kapil Mishra gave an "ultimatum" to the police to remove anti-CAA protests blocking roads in the area. He asked people to gather at Maujpur Chowk in support of the CAA in reply to the roadblock by those protesting against the new citizenship law. The speech made was against the CAA protestors but not the Muslim community. In his speech he asked Delhi Police to remove the blockade within three days, if not then he would not listen to the police, and pro CAA protestors has to hit the roads.
After this incident, on 24th one anti-CAA protestor brandished a pistol and fired eight-shot towards the pro-CAA protestors, who was identified as Mohammad Sharukh. The leftist media by then had already taken the heat into the hand and was on the road accusing the government. One of the prime examples would be the Wikipedia Article titled North East Delhi Riots where the one sees the first image of Kapil Mishra, not an image of the riots.
Nevertheless, the point is not to go into the rights and wrongs of the two communities. Consideration is about whether the media should be free from such inherent core biases. Both the wings were faulty on their part. There lies no evidence that due to only Hindus or Muslims, such violence arose. Media with an unbiased mind should have brought forth the ideologies or the motive behind the people who wanted such incident to occur.
Media is considered as the mirror of the nation and should only reflect what is true in entirety. Some of the leftist media claimed that the increase in vote percentage after every eruption of violence. Before making such an accusation, violence never attracts a positive interface. Mostly in these cases, damages are irreparable, and so has the BJP government faced from the international community. The media should be cautious in their acts so that other nations don’t benefit from our internal issues.
Journey of upcoming book Delhi Riots 2020: An Untold Story
As mentioned in the introduction, the journey of this book has been no less than a complete story to be stated. Initially, Bloomsbury India signed the book for publication and before the book launch event wherein Kapil Mishra with the other three authors were invited and was canceled later, why, because of the outrage in the community outside. It has been implicated that the book mentions instances which are evidently not true and falsely implicate several leaders. One of the videos from Quint stated that there is a chapter on Urban Naxalism and Jihadism Theory which is true but, in the spirit, it is the book that needs to be told to the world outside.
There are several instances where terrible plagiarised books have been published in the name of art by several reputed publishing houses like Harper Collins, but in this case, leftist media found it very right tilted—coming on to the legal standing that Freedom of Speech and expression cannot be curtailed except in the manner given under its restrictions.
The delivery of idea is a fundamental right. Every idea is not accepted by each and every person in the world but still exists two polarised views for every subject matter. Would all of them will also fall under restriction. The answer is very obvious, no. So is this case, the book is a general description of the event through the eyes of the authors. It is on the audience to decide whether they appreciate or dislike. A publisher cannot avoid publishing the book because it is a polarising topic with understanding different from their perspective.
Garuda Prakashan is now publishing the book and already a good amount of copies have been presold. Several liberal supporters like Anurag Kashyap have also come out in support of authors, and even Author Sanjay Dixit has also tweeted terminating his contract with Bloomsbury India for his books. The true incidents and stories on it will always bring out such conflicts, but publications should bear in mind, it is the medium for expressing the freedom of speech and expression, and if they become constrained, how will then ideas be promulgated.