A 22-year-old tourist from Chennai became a victim of Islamist stone pelters of Kashmir on Monday after he died owing to critical injuries he suffered at their hands. This incident happened when the bus carrying him and other tourists came under the attack from a mob of stone pelters.
After the pelted stones caused serious head injuries to Thirumani Selvan, he was rushed to Sheri Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences in Srinagar. But he, unfortunately, succumbed to his injuries.
Following this incident, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti met Thirumani’s grieving family to offer her condolences and commented that her head hung in shame.
The Times of India though seems slightly unaware of the immeasurable grief of Thirumani’s family, as they have now carried an article whose headline insinuated the newspaper’s alleged attempt to blame the victim:
As seen above, the headline of the TOI report insinuates that the “Tamil Nadu tourist’s” decision to wear headphones while travelling in the bus, was supposedly the contributing reason for death. This angle was also peddled in the story’s content, in the following manner:
Immersed in music when the stones were being pelted, Selvan didn’t hear his father shout
Predictably people were not happy at TOI’s reporting and reacted accordingly:
Do you mean that earphone was the reason of his death? What type of journalism it is?
— Goverdhan Singh (@GoverdhanSinghS) May 9, 2018
Blame earphones, not Jehadi stone-pelters https://t.co/pM99i6G19m
— iMac_too (@iMac_too) May 9, 2018
Yes, blame the earphones @timesofindia! And yeah, I see that 22 year old Thirumani was just some nameless ‘Tamil Nadu Tourist’ for you. But Akhlaq, Pehlu, Kafeel Khan, Mohammad Rafi Bhat, now THEY all had names! https://t.co/hdhvCauBm6
— Shefali Vaidya (@ShefVaidya) May 9, 2018
Oh, so are we supposed to believe that the earphone not the stone-pelter’s “missile” killed him? https://t.co/LA50ppVsQL
— Makarand R Paranjape (@MakrandParanspe) May 9, 2018
Shame on the tourist, his dad and the earphones.
Don’t anybody dare blame the stone-pelter. https://t.co/vBTYRntGi2
— Sujoy (@SujoyGhosh1729) May 9, 2018
Such an act of victim blaming by TOI also may lead people to question whether the publication was trying to deflect attention from the radical stone pelters, who committed the brutal crime? And in order to do so, did it figure out a way to deflect the blame onto the earphones and the person wearing them.