On the morning of August 13, there was some buzz on social media that Pranab Mukherjee, former President of India and Bharat Ratna, has expired. Jounrnalist Rajdeep Sardesai was one of the very first persons to tweet about the former president’s demise.
AICC secretary and former MLA from Telangana Vamsi Chand Reddy also tweeted condolences for the former president, declaring that he is dead.
With a prominent journalist and a senior congress leader tweeting about the death of the former president, the ‘news’ caught up and many social media users started tweeting about Mukherjee’s so-called death.
However. Abhijit Mukherjee, the former president’s son and Sharmistha, his daughter, tweeted saying that he is alive and is thermodynamically stable. They condemned the behaviour of certain media persons, declaring a person dead even before confirmation from reliable sources. Abhijit stated, “Speculations & fake news being circulated by reputed Journalists on social media clearly reflects that Media in India has become a factory of Fake News .”
My Father Shri Pranab Mukherjee is still alive & haemodynamically stable !— Abhijit Mukherjee (@ABHIJIT_LS) August 13, 2020
Speculations & fake news being circulated by reputed Journalists on social media clearly reflects that Media in India has become a factory of Fake News .
Though Abhijit did not mention Rajdeep’s name, it was clear from his tweet that he was deeply anguished to see a senior journalist like Rajdeep tweeting about his father’s death without confirmation.
Sharmistha Mukherjee, the former president’s daughter also slammed the fake claims and even requested media persons to not disturb her by calling her, as she needs to keep her phone free for updates from the hospital about her father’s health and treatment.
Rumours about my father is false. Request, esp’ly to media, NOT to call me as I need to keep my phone free for any updates from the hospital🙏— Sharmistha Mukherjee (@Sharmistha_GK) August 13, 2020
Rajdeep Sardesai apologises for his tweet
Following the clarifications by the former president’s children, Rajdeep deleted his previous tweet and apologised. He stated that he should not have fallen for fake news and should have confirmed before tweeting.
Pranab Mukherjee remains critical and is comatose
The former president has undergone brain surgery recently and was later also diagnosed with coronavirus. As shared by journalist Shiv Aroor, sources from the Army RR Hospital, were the former president is being treated, have informed that Pranab Mukherjee remains critical following his surgery and infection.
“The condition of Hon’ble Shri Pranab Mukherjee remains unchanged this morning. He is deeply comatose with stable vital parameters and he continues to be on ventilatory support,” informed Aroor.
He had tested coronavirus positive on 10 August
Former President Pranab Mukherjee had informed via a tweet on 10th August that on a visit to a hospital for a separate procedure, he was tested positive for COVID-19. He had requested everyone who came in his contact to self-isolate and got tested for the infection.
It was reported later that he had undergone brain surgery and while in the hospital, was diagnosed coronavirus positive too. Pranab Mukherjee is 84 years old.