Union Minister Smriti Irani some might argue, has been at the receiving end of one of the most sustained hit jobs from her political adversaries.
It has been reported how a prominent newspaper decided to target her with a sexist headline after she was transferred to the Textile ministry from HRD in 2016. Apart from that, prominent journalists, Congress spokespersons and media houses have ganged up to carry out hit jobs against her.
Things were taken to a new low by Congress supporter Tehseen Poonawalla, who is not related to the more prominent and successful Poonawallas. Tehseen was exposed by Smriti Irani herself after she showed his offensive and misogynist tweet targeted against her on live television, following which he was forced to delete it.
Now it seems that such attacks against Smriti Irani have been revived, this time by a doctor named Anand Rai who calls himself the whistleblower of Vypam scam:
इन्हें भी कोई देख ले…
आदर्श सरकार के आदर्श मंत्री
दिल्ली की ‘आध्यात्मिक यौन यूनिवर्सिटी’ के बलात्कारी बाबा वीरेन्द्र देव दीक्षित के आश्रम में ‘प्रसाद’ लेने गयी थी स्मृति ईरानी। pic.twitter.com/YJLFMBN7PP
— Dr. Anand Rai (@anandrai177) December 23, 2017
In the above tweet, Rai is seen alleging that Smriti Irani has gone to take ‘prasad’ from the ashram of a certain Baba named Virendra Dev Dikshit and also affixed an alleged photo of her with that Baba as ‘proof’.
This Baba in question has featured prominently in the news recently after UP and Delhi police raided three centres run by him to rescue 47 women and six minor girls. He has been accused of keeping these girls inhumanly confined, who as per reports, were also sexually assaulted.
So when the Vypam doctor decided to make a lewd insinuation that Smriti Irani had gone to meet this Baba to seek ‘prasad’, people decided to investigate.
Soon, Twitter users caught Rai’s lie :
— Vishal Surywanshi (@vsurywanshi87) December 24, 2017
Twitter user Ketan C Bhate also busted Dr. Rai’s lie. As seen in an India Today report in 2014, the picture shared by Dr. Rai is actually of Smriti Irani meeting an astrologer from Rajasthan, who claimed she was destined to become the president of India:
As clearly seen above, Smriti Irani had not met the controversial Baba and the whistleblower Doctor, seems to have raked up a three year old photo of Smriti Irani in order to try and malign her.
People as a result of this act, were very angry against Dr. Rai and decided to react:
Hello @mpcyberpolice. Here’s @anandrai177 spreading lies and also indulging in targeted harassment of a lady. Union Cabinet Minister @smritiirani in this case. What action do you propose to take? https://t.co/o4YGGdLXWH
— Ketan C Bhate (@BhateKetan) December 24, 2017
Dr. Anand Rai (@anandrai177) a serial faker claimed that @smritiirani is with Baba Virendra Dev Dixit but FACT is this Photo is of Astrologer Pandit Nathulal Vyas. Link of his tweet: https://t.co/90BVzgnNMs pic.twitter.com/cI2hCrl0s0
— Anshul Saxena (@AskAnshul) December 24, 2017
This is how fake news is spread. Some chap @anandrai177 who calls himself an ‘RTI activist’ shares @smritiirani‘s pic with a Rajasthan astrologer as her pic with some Balatkari Baba. The lie gets tweeted more than 2K times! pic.twitter.com/fFX4IwhcXY
— Shefali Vaidya (@ShefVaidya) December 25, 2017
So farzi @anandrai177 is spreading fake pics to malign BJP for his political gains. Media projects him as VYAPAM whistle-blower when he’s nothing more than a Congressi stooge pic.twitter.com/OtGqyGXiuc
— Ankur Singh (@iAnkurSingh) December 24, 2017
It remains to be seen whether Smriti Irani decides to take any legal action against this doctor for maligning her, which might dissuade others from carrying out similar acts in the future.