The ‘secular-liberal’ media, which often resorts to push false propaganda to target Hindus across the country, has been relentlessly attempting to create a narrative that no Hindus can be a victim of communal violence in the country.
Continuing similar propaganda, the left-leaning website ‘The Wire‘, known for its anti-India propaganda, had tried to dilute the incident of lynching of two Hindu Sadhus and their driver on 16th April 2020 in Palghar, Maharashtra by claiming that both the deceased and the perpetrators belonged to denotified tribes and had declared that it was not communal violence.
In its report, The Wire had peddled fake news by stating the two deceased persons – 70-year old Kalpvrush Giri and 35-year old Sushil Giri belonged to Gosavi Nomadic Tribe community and their brutal lynching had no religious angle as they belonged to the tribal community just as Christian-converted tribes of the Palghar. The report by The Wire insinuated that they were not Hindus and not sadhus.
“Kalpavruksh Giri, the 70-year-old victim, had worn a saffron gamcha around his shoulders and Twitter was quick to identify him as a “Hindu” and “sadhu”. However, social activists and Gosavi community leaders say that two of the deceased belonged to the nomadic tribal community…,” the report said.
The report had attributed the claim of the tribal identity of the sadhus to no one other than “social activists and Gosavi community leaders”. The report carried no comments by either the victims’ families or the Juna Akhara.
Siddharth Vardharajan calls victims as people from ‘nomadic tribe
According to journalist Swati Goel Sharma, The Wire’s founding editor Siddharth Varadarajan, speaking to Newslaundry, had also claimed that sadhus as ‘people belonging to nomadic tribes’.
Sharma has been pursuing the issue since she first pointed it out that how these portals were trying to peddle the narrative that the sadhus were not Hindus. She was even blocked by The Wire’s journalist Sukanya Shantha when she had raised the issue.
In a recent interview to @MnshaP of Newslaundry, Mr Vardarajan @svaradarajan repeated the misinformation that sadhus lynched in Palghar were adivasi tribals.— Swati Goel Sharma (@swati_gs) May 6, 2020
They were NOT tribals. They were born in Tiwari and Dubey families in UP, as reported by multiple other publications pic.twitter.com/WCv456S9Hb
In a recent interview to Manisha Pande of Newslaundry, Vardarajan repeated the misinformation that sadhus lynched in Palghar were Adivasi tribals.
The Newslaundry anchor, who often lectures others on media ethics, did not even dare to correct the founding editor of The Wire.
The Print peddles misinformation on Palghar lynching
The Print, which has a history of absolving crimes of non-Hindus, also resorted to spreading false propaganda on Palghar lynching by reporting that the two Hindu sadhus belonged to Gosavi tribe while attributing this information to no source.
“The sadhus – 70 year old Kaklpvrush Giri and 5-year-old Sushil Giri – belonged to the Gosavi nomadic tribe,” reported The Print.
The two deceased Sadhus belonged to Brahmin community
As ‘liberal-secular media resorted to spread misinformation regarding the identity of the Sadhus, several independent media organisations published ground report refuting reports that the two Sadhus belonged to tribal community.
The ground reports by Hindi daily Dainik Bhaskar and news channel Aaj Tak show that the two sadhus were born in Hindu families of Brahmin castes in Uttar Pradesh. Both left their families before their teenage to become Hindu ascetics.
The Bhaskar and Aaj Tak reports are based on interviews with the victims’ families and carry their video statements and photographs.
The Wire corrects its report after peddling misinformation
Nearly a month after carrying fake news on the identity of the victims to absolve the crimes of the brutal mob violence in Palghar, The Wire has silently edited its report claiming that the two Sadhus belonged to Brahmin families contrary to their earlier report claiming they were Gosavi tribal community.
The clarification reads, “In the light of news reports from Uttar Pradesh that identified the two Sadhus as Brahmins from Uttar Pradesh, the headline and text of this story has been revised to correct the earlier claim made by Gosavi comminity activists that the two deceased sadhus belonged to their community of denotified tribals.” They also claimed that the Palghar police had not provided them any details of the lunching victims.
The Print, however, yet to issue a clarification on the misinformation they had peddled pertaining to Palghar incident.
Palghar Mob Lynching incident
On 16th April 2020, two Sadhus associated with the Juna Akhara, 70-year-old Kalpavrishka Giri Maharaj, and 35-year-old Sushil Giri Maharaj along with their driver 30-year-old Nilesh Telgadewere were on their way from Mumbai to Gujarat to give Samadhi to another Sadhu. At Gadakchinchale village, a wild and frenzied crowd of over more than 100 people attacked them. The villagers deemed them as thieves and started attacking them. The police claim that their team which had rushed to the spot to rescue the 70-year-old man also came under the attack of the violent mob.
But later videos emerged which completely debunked the claim of police, as it was seen that the sadhus were in the custody of the police, but the police personnel handed them over to the mob. The mob then proceeded them to beat them to death in front of the policemen.
Later, it was also revealed that the killing of the Sadhus was intentional and it was done due to political reasons and it was also suspected that Christian missionaries backed by NCP, left parties were behind the lynching of two Hindu Sadhus.