For some reason, some sections of the media, and some politicians have developed a weird fetish of discussing Prime Minister Modi’s clothes. The first instance of this was seen when Modi wore the rather garish monogrammed suit. Sure it deserved some attention, but fashionistas on Twitter went ahead to cook up estimated costs of the suit from absolute thin air. As per twitter intelligentsia, the cost was then estimated to be Rs 10 lakhs odd, and as per Rahul Gandhi’s unquestionable memory and mathematical skills, just last week, the cost escalated to Rs 15 lakhs. Of course we had discussed earlier how both these figures are pure lies.
Ordinarily we would not be giving attention to such purile topics, but we have to so, to call out yet another media lie. In a post from September, titled “You are what you wear: Modi changes clothes four times in a day“, Hindustan Times chose to devote an article to Modi’s clothes during his US trip. As the title suggests, they claimed Modi changed clothes 4 times on a single day. According to HT, these are the four events which took placec on one day, and these are his four sets of clothes:
No only did HT choose to focus on something only Rahul Gandhi focuses on, the article itself showed how poor the background work was. Unfortunately for HT and fortunately for us, Vikas Swarup, Official Spokesperson, Ministry of External Affairs, India was live tweeting Modi’s entire USA visit with pictures. And the facts just don’t support HT’s claim that Modi changed clothes four times in a day!
All the above events are from San Jose, so it would be sufficient only to focus on that leg of Modi’s US trip to expose HT’s shoddy reporting. Just from his tweets, we can rebuild Modi’s itinerary (all pics from Official MEA handle):
IST 27 September 2015 4.01 am (local time 26 September 3.31 pm): Modi arrives at Tesla Motors
IST 27 September 2015 5.46 am (local time 26 September 5.16 pm): Modi meets Tim cook
IST 27 September 2015 8.01 am (local time 26 September 7.31 pm): Modi at Digital India Dinner
IST 27 September 2015 9.56 pm (local time 27 September 9.26 am): Modi arrives at Facebook Townhall
IST 27 September 2015 11.43 pm (local time 27 September 11.13 am): Modi at Google headquarters
IST 28 September 2015 5.25 am (local time 27 September 4.55 pm): Modi meets founder of Khan Academy
IST 28 September 2015 7.12 am (local time 27 September 6.42 pm): Modi arrives at SAP center
From the above, it is clear that contrary to HT’s claims, Modi was at Tesla Motors and Digital India meet on Day 1, and was at Facebook Townhall and SAP centre on Day 2. From this and the pics it is clear that Modi in fact changed his clothes only twice per day and 4 times if you add both the days, but for some reason HT chose to claim that all these events were on the same day. Yes we reiterate this is a very idiotic point to be discussing but it must be discussed only to call out Hindustan Times’ poor reporting
Another interesting trend though is, not only does Media misreport on Modi’s clothes, Rahul Gandhi too uses that a spring-board and leaps into his imaginary land. In the case of the monogrammed suit, Media came up with an arbitrary figure of Rs 10 lakhs, and Rahul Gandhi promptly distorted it to Rs 15 lacs. In this case too, HT wrongly claimed that Modi changed clothes 4 times in a day, and Rahul Gandhi in Bihar claims that Modi changed clothes 16 times while in USA. Is this a coincidence? On two occasions media misreports and Rahul Gandhi repeats it ad nauseum making it an urban legend.
Whatever the motives behind such malicious news reports, media should attack Modi on valid points, instead of focussing on trivial issues such as this. This will also be helpful to us, and we can stop focussing on such trashy articles by MSM.
P.S. Thanks to this twitter user for the tip-off