“If you can’t beat them, join them.” A retired Pakistani army officer, Nadir Khan learnt this philosophy after many of his unsuccessful appearances on Times Now’s prime time show The Newshour.
Khan, a regular panellist on the Arnab Goswami-hosted fiery show was earlier a staunch patriot who boasted of fighting two wars against India in his military career. But facing Arnab’s unstoppable verbal tirades, he would get astonished. “Which machine gun is this? It just doesn’t stop,” he would ask himself in astonishment after the show.
Despite repeated pleas by fellow countrymen to not to appear on the show, Khan would not budge and would take a vow to teach a lesson to the ‘loudmouth, arrogant’ anchor.
Khan was allowed to speak just one sentence in his first appearance, and that too was cut short by Arnab who flung a set of five ‘tough’ questions to the army man.
During the subsequent shows, Khan got the opportunity to complete his sentences but his machine gun-like provocations were countered by angry, pointed missile-like rejoinders of Maroof Raza.
In one of the shows, unable to handle General GD Bakshi’s unyielding yelling, Khan decided it was wise to drop the weapons and leave the show.
The trend continued and the panellist could not go beyond “listen to me, Arnab” which would always get cut short by “no, you listen to me, Mr. Khan!”.
Khan would often rehearse his lines hours before the show but could never deliver them when it mattered. His confidence started to crumble and he started to question himself.
Gradually, Khan went into depression and started to believe there is no weapon invented yet to take on the might of the one-man army that hosts The Newshour.
Doctors say he now suffers from Stockholm syndrome-like symptoms as he has now started to lean towards India. In one of the shows he agreed and nodded to all the points made by Arnab, even on Kashmir. “Whatever you think is right,” Khan replied to almost all questions with a sad smile on that show.
The news channel is now mulling not to invite the Pakistani panellist as he has started to sound more Indian than the Indian panellists which they fear would lower the TRPs of the show.