Yesterday, The Times of India ran a story claiming that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s cook hailing from Varanasi has expressed his disgruntlement over PM’s ‘Pakoda comment‘, which has recently left the so-called ‘liberals’ spasmodic.
The media house in its story published yesterday mentioned that a cook named Rajiv Batwal, working in the kitchen of Varanasi’s Diesel Locomotive Workshop (DLW), who has cooked for the Prime Minister on several occasions, criticised Narendra Modi over his statement where he said that selling Pakoras is also a type of employment.
The article stated Batwal said “I didn’t like his remarks on pakoda sellers. Those who have completed MBA or engineering cannot be looking to sell pakodas. It belittled the efforts of youth who study or work hard and dashes their dreams.” This was in reference to the comment made by Prime Minister Modi earlier this year when he had said selling pakodas is also a form of employment.
Rajiv Batwal, however, clarified that he had no such grievances against the Prime Minister and denied of giving any such statement. “I don’t know anything about it. They asked me since when I’m working here, I told I cook here for past 10 yrs. I don’t know anything about politics over “pakoda”. Whatever is published is wrong.”
Rajiv Batwal,PM’s cook in Varanasi on reports he isn’t impressed with PM’s pakoda comment:I don’t know anything about it.They asked me since when I’m working here,I told I cook here for past 10 yrs.I don’t know anything about politics over “pakoda”. Whatever is published is wrong pic.twitter.com/vyQzofyaY5
— ANI (@ANI) December 29, 2018
Once this statement from the cook himself started creating a stir on Twitter, the Times of India craftily edited the story’s online version, changed the headlines and removed the lines that were denied by Rajiv Batwal.
Few Twitter users were although quick in pointing out how TOI had effortlessly altered the content to cloak the narrative they tried peddling which sadly boomeranged at them.
Amazing. @timesofindia runs a story on Page 1, quietly edits the story’s online version and removes the lines that have now been denied by the person to whom they were attributed. Credibility is truly on a super discount. #EndOfWinterSale pic.twitter.com/d0TBVMQFR4
— Kanchan Gupta (@KanchanGupta) December 29, 2018
TOI was earlier, also caught on the wrong foot, as it tried passing off a Hindu saint’s picture to depict a Muslim rape accused. After being heavily criticised for the same, the channel had later tendered an apology for giving a misleading spin to its article.
In July 2018, TOI had also received a legal notice for allegedly hurting the sentiments of Hindus by portraying ‘Veda Pathshalas’ as Human Trafficking centres. Following the furore on Social Media, TOI had then too, proceeded to quietly change the headline to delete the Veda Pathshala reference but failed to provide any apology for its mistake.