The Congress it seems has yet to forget the 1975 Emergency tradition of branding journalists. At least that was too evident at some of the recent launch ceremonies. The latest was during the release of the Congress agenda on security and defence. The spokesman, Anand Sharma was picking and choosing journalists. He was careful enough to pick those who over the years are known for asking soft questions at Congress press meets.
As a journalist raised his hands during a short pause, Sharma ignored him. When he again raised his hands, the Congress economic expert, Jairam Ramesh requested Sharma to allow him to ask the question. Sharma brushed him aside. This happened a number of times till the function came to an end.
When the journalist protested, Sharma retorted that since he knew him as an RSS aide, he could not risk a question from him. The journalist said he was a thorough professional and Sharma had no business to brand him. As Ramesh intervened, Sharma once again brushed him aside saying, “I know better than you.” This speaks high of the chinks in the leadership as well the Congress attempt to stifle the voice of the free press.