By Sushil Kutty
Republic TV head honcho and anchor-in-chief Arnab Goswami is not happy with the NIA, the country’s premier investigating agency. One gets the feeling that as far as Goswami is concerned the NIA shouldn’t forget that Vaze is first and foremost complicit in hounding Arnab Goswami and Republic TV Network, and only then guilty of going after the country’s “private” national treasure. One gets the distinct hint that Goswami thinks Mukesh Ambani for all his Asia’s No.1 billionaire status is not a patch on you know who!
Goswmi and Republic TV don’t like the direction the entire case revolving round Sachin Vaze is taking. In Arnab’s reckoning there are three villains — the Uddhav Thackeray Government, Param Bir Singh and Sachin Vaze. And two of the villains are almost scot-free. Right under Goswami’s disgusted nose. The Republic TV editor-in-chief is livid. He cannot stop from insinuating that Vaze for all his criminal mind and crime-busting record cannot be acting on his own, he must be in cahoots with someone ‘big, and hale and hearty!’
And why is the NIA making an approver of Vaze’s brother-in-law-breaking Riyaz Kazi, doesn’t the NIA know that Kazi was standing right next to Vaze, shoulder to shoulder, in Arnab Goswami’s apartment that fateful morning when they dragged him to Taloja Jail? The Republic TV head honcho is adamant that the NIA gets to the bottom of the “case” by not stopping at Vaze, there had to be somebody viler than Vaze leading the claptrap, bigger fish with maw wider than that of Sachin Vaze.
Arnab Goswami tests his founded and unfounded theories on his primetime show, and he makes it a point to tell everybody glued to the TV screen and smartphone that the Republic TV does a much thorough job of investigation than any rival television network, or the NIA. He reiterates this little known fact so many times that it remains stuck in the gullet of the viewer of his eminently forgettable show. Republic TV’s “let’s debate” every weeknight is an invitation to get eardrums perforated.
Trust his attack-pitbulls to add to the sound and fury. Yup, Arnab Goswami’s attack-hounds make such a racket that it’s hard to make out who is the bigger racketeer, Sachin Vaze or the attack-dogs! Arnab Goswami’s primetime show is scripted in such a manner that when he holds forth, which is after every two-three minutes, nobody interrupts, but when a guest/panelist talks, everybody including the said guest hollers!
The attack-dogs — the alsatians and the pitbulls, the nervously jumpy pomeranians, they are all so-well trained that it’s hard not to wonder if they aren’t paid to bellow their lungs out! One of them, the editor of a Goa daily, is so loudly shrill you wouldn’t want him to be your neighbour, ever. Another is a Chennai lawyer with eyes bulging behind thick glasses, and the third, a retired “general” whose forte is to suddenly break out in self-righteous shouted indignation.
All these fellows are telling the NIA that the probe cannot go ahead without the NIA doing something about that no-good Param Bir Singh, and the equally no-good “politicians”, who must definitely be the ones who were calling the shots. The alsatians and the pitbulls that Arnab packs his primetime panel with, work overtime to pick holes in NIA’s investigation, which he says is missing the woods for the tree.
But while it may chump most of us as to who could be the puppeteer running the Vaze show, it’s not very hard to pinpoint as to whlch must be the hand that rocks Arnab’s cradle! It’s not for nothing that they have coined the sobriquet “Godi Media”, lapdog media in commonly spoken English. Arnab Goswami is solely, single-handedly, responsible for foisting on hardworking, impartial journalists the disparaging “Godi Media” slander.
But that’s okay, so long as the NIA doesn’t get swayed. The Uddhav Thackeray Government is adamant the investigation gets to the bottom of the case in all its entirety. Shiv Sena Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Raut remembered that Anil Deshmukh was an accidental home minister! Then, too, he is also asking how is it that Param Bir Singh did not get to know what SachinVaze was up to when the two were like Siamese? Sanjay Raut, however, trusts SharadPawar like Ram his brother Bharat.
Then it dawns on everybody that Raut is only doing what he has to do, what he must do, i.e., save the Uddhav Thackeray Government. Precisely what NCP supremo Sharad Pawar is also doing. But, then, why the late night meeting with Union Home Minister Amit Shah? That was cloak and dagger. But, Shah asks all and sundry, what’s in it for you? And Pawar doesn’t care to lisp a ‘no comments’. They might as well have met to discuss Ahmedabad weather!
All we can agree to with a degree of certainty is that the political climate in Maharashtra/Mumbai is like that in the eye of the storm. The weatherman doesn’t say there’s a cyclone gathering in the high seas, but something’s gonna break, that much is for certain — breaking news, involving Sachin Vaze and, maybe, Param Bir Singh. Sharad Pawar is doing his utmost best to save Anil Deshmukh, and the MVA Government.
But then, what’s Amit Shah’s role in saving the day for Sharad Pawar? We don’t know, speculation is rife, but futile. Wannabie supercop in NIA custody Sachin Vaze has everybody in the MVA acting/reacting in oddish manner. It’s as if the Shiv Sena doesn’t know who to attack, the NCP or the BJP; and the NCP doesn’t know who to reach out to? Sachin Vaze is dispensible, but anybody of a higher rank and that will open a can of worms. The proverbial Pandora’s Box!
The MVA Government of Uddhav Thackeray is in a sticky fix. Looks like the Chanakya in the MVA took a couple of missteps and did not notice what was happening under his nose. The gelatin sticks outside national treasure’s skyscraper is at the crux of the whole shebang. That, and Sachin Vaze’s shenanigans involving high-end cars, the PPE suit, extortion allegations and murder most foul, not to miss the “moll” at Mumbai’s Trident Hotel with the cash counting machine.
Mumbai’s Mithi River has spilled out its secrets, but what about the Modi Government, and the BJP, what are they up to? It’s impossible to believe that all that the BJP wants is for the law to take its own course. Behind the murder and the extortion, the allegations and the counter-allegations, behind everything that’s happened in Mumbai ever since Sachin Vaze went hunting for fame and found infamy, there’s politics, and attempts at power-grab in Maharashtra. Like Mark Antony said in Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, ‘Cry ‘Havoc!’ And let slip the dogs of war.’ (IPA Service)