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Kanchan Gupta

Kanchan Gupta

Affiliation: Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, Government of India
Vocation/ Title: Senior Adviser, Ministry of I&B, Government of India
Location: Delhi, India

Kanchan Gupta is a political analyst closely associated with the Hindu nationalist Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP). In June 2021, he was appointed Senior Adviser to the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, Government of India.

He worked for well-known news outlets, including The Telegraph, The Statesman, and The Pioneer. In 1995 he gave up full-time journalism to focus on a public career. He started assisting Hindu far-right leaders like L.K. Advani and Atal Bihari Vajpayee in their political work.

In an interview with Newslaundry in 2012, he defended Hindu extremist leadership involved in the demolition of Babri mosque in 1992.

He accepted in the interview to have quoted Hitler and invoked ‘violent measures’ to fan anti-Muslim sentiments during the anti-Babri Masjid campaigns in the 90s. He also said that he feels piety for the Burqa-clad Muslim women for their ‘subjugation.’ When the interviewer counter-questioned him about Hindu women who cover their faces, he just smiled.

Downplaying the ferociousness of  the 2002 anti-muslim Pogrom of GujaratGupta said, “These were not the most terrible riots India had witnessed.”

The Gujarat pogrom of 2002 was not particularly significant because “not every Muslim in India had been killed,” he continued, adding allusions to several other communal conflicts and stating that the number of victims was significantly higher in several other similar instances.

In the aftermath of the 2002 Gujarat pogrom, Gupta was sent to the middle east to assuage the enraged Muslim countries by the then NDA ( National Democratic Alliance) government led by Atal Bihari Vajpai.

In February 2022, he wrote a piece in the Hindu far-right news outlet Swarajya,  vilifying and mocking a Muslim journalist, Rana Ayyub, calling her a “soapbox polemicist, a charlatan who intentionally controverts reality on an industrial scale to stitch a cloak of Muslim insecurity and Muslim persecution in India.”

At the India Today East Conclave 2022,  he said: “Bengal has had a history of contributing to the idea of Hindutva. And that idea was subsequently accepted even by the Supreme Court in 1995-1996. Hindutva stands for cultural civilizational identity. If you add nationalism to it, it becomes cultural nationalism. And Bengal is a classic example of cultural nationalism.”

In response to the BBC documentary on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s role in the Gujarat pogrom, Gupta labeled it “a hostile propaganda and anti-India garbage, disguised as ‘documentary.” The I&B Ministry blocked multiple YouTube videos of the first episode of the BBC documentary and issued orders to Twitter to block more than 50  tweets with links to these videos.

Gupta has been an active peddler of the anti-Muslim conspiracy theory of ‘love jihad.’ He even renamed the conspiracy theory as “ishq jihad,” claiming to give it a proper desi (indigenous) context. Offensive expressions like “Islamic terror” and “radical Islam” are readily available at his disposal.

He often resorts to fake news and misinformation to spread Hindu far-right propaganda. His Twitter is filled with Islamophobia and anti-Muslim rhetoric.