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BBC in ‘bias’ row over Amol Rajan documentary on Royal family despite once calling monarchy ‘absurd’

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The BBC has sparked a fresh ‘bias’ row after it emerged Amol Rajan will write and present a two-part series about younger royals despite once calling the monarchy ‘absurd’.

Amol Rajan, 38, who is a presenter on Radio 4’s flagship current affairs show Today Programme, is set to front a two-part royal documentary for BBC Two, named The Princes and the Press, which will air on November 22.  

The royal documentary will ‘chart the years in which the younger royals – the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex – have charted very different courses in their relationship with the media’, the BBC have said. 

It will ‘tell the definitive story of one of the most dramatic periods for a generation’, however royal experts are worried that the BBC will face fresh questions over their ‘impartiality guidelines’. 

The Duke (Left) and Duchess of Cambridge (Pictured Right) will be included in the documentary The Princes and the Press, which will air on November 22, fronted by Amol Rajan, 38, a presenter on Radio 4's flagship current affairs show Today Programme

The Duke (Left) and Duchess of Cambridge (Pictured Right) will be included in the documentary The Princes and the Press, which will air on November 22, fronted by Amol Rajan, 38, a presenter on Radio 4’s flagship current affairs show Today Programme

Rajan became the first non-white editor of a national newspaper when he was named as the head of The Independent newspaper in 2013.

But in a 2012 column, he criticised the way the media portrayed the royals and voiced his dislike for the ‘absurd’ monarchy.

He wrote: ‘When it comes to our absurd monarchy, journalists are so bamboozled by aristocratic wealth that they can only portray a confected picture to their audience.

‘”Mrs Wales – spare us from the ‘Duchess of Cambridge” – is a beautiful lady, and does noble work. But like the rest of us she is prone to bad moods and bad breath, and doesn’t look her best on a hangover.

‘You wouldn’t know that from media coverage of her. What you get is an idol, not a person.

‘I have absolutely nothing against Prince Harry, or Prince William, or Catherine Middleton, or the Queen. 

The BBC is facing 'an impartiality row' after it emerged Rajan will write and present a two-part series about younger royals despite once calling the monarchy 'absurd'. (Pictured )The Duke (Left) and Duchess of Sussex (Right)

The BBC is facing ‘an impartiality row’ after it emerged Rajan will write and present a two-part series about younger royals despite once calling the monarchy ‘absurd’. (Pictured )The Duke (Left) and Duchess of Sussex (Right)

‘Other royals, particularly Prince Philip and the scientifically illiterate Prince Charles, who champions policies that would lead to the murder by starvation of millions of Africans, I dislike.’

The BBC have said Rajan left his 'past views as the door' once he joined the corporation and will be 'impartial'

The BBC have said Rajan left his ‘past views as the door’ once he joined the corporation and will be ‘impartial’

Dickie Arbiter, who is a royal expert and the Queen’s former press secretary, told The Telegraph: ‘Unfortunately reporting at the BBC seems to have fallen by the wayside – now it’s all about opinion. Has Amol Rajan changed his opinion since the Indie?’   

The much-anticipated documentary will ‘explain what these events reveal about two great pillars of modern Britain, the monarchy and the media, and the real story behind their fraught, complex and changing relationship’.  

The BBC told the MailOnline that Rajan left his ‘past views as the door’ once he joined the corporation and the series will be in line with their editorial guidelines.

The BBC said: ‘This article predates Amol’s work at the BBC. Once journalists join the BBC, they leave past views at the door. 

‘Amol is an experienced BBC journalist who reports on all of the topics he covers in an impartial way and in line with the BBC’s editorial guidelines. All BBC current affairs output is required to be impartial.’     

Joe Little, who is the managing editor of Majesty magazine, also said it would be ‘interesting to see if those sentiments prevail.’  

The much-anticipated documentary will ‘explain what these events reveal about two great pillars of modern Britain, the monarchy and the media, and the real story behind their fraught, complex and changing relationship’.

Episode one will follow the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, which celebrated 60 years of Her Majesty’s reign, and received much lighter coverage from the media than the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s Royal Wedding in April 2011.

It also ‘charts the years leading up to and including the engagement and marriage of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’, exploring the Prince’ positive relationship with the media.



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