Wednesday, October 21, 2020
Home Media Self-proclaimed 'fact-checker' thinks penalising communally sensitive fake news is a ‘misplaced priority’ simply because...

Self-proclaimed ‘fact-checker’ thinks penalising communally sensitive fake news is a ‘misplaced priority’ simply because the channel that peddled it is NDTV

With such communally sensitive fake news being peddled by NDTV, for a 'fact-checker' to pass it off so lightly only means that the 'fact-checker' himself has a strong enough bias that lets him overlook dangerous fake news being peddled by channels that are ideologically aligned to him.

The Left-ecosystem is a rather strange place. It’s the black hole that seems to consume within it every bit of morality, principles and decency that one expects from civilised human beings. A prime example of just how delusional and bereft of morality the Left is was displayed today by Pratik Sinha, a self-proclaimed fact-checker and co-founder of AltNews.

Taking to Twitter, Pratik Sinha responded to the Home Minister of Gujarat who had tweeted saying that he would be penalising NDTV for the blatant fake news they spread when they alleged that a Tanishq showroom in Gujarat had been “attacked by a mob” after netizens took strong offence to the ad that was released by the brand.

Pratik Sinha wrote, “The priorities of Home Minister of Gujarat, who is responsible for law and order, is not in sync with reality. He’s completely overlooked the act of the goons who threatened the staff of Tanishq, and is more upset about NDTV who have corrected the inaccuracies in their report”.

It is important to note here that Pratik Sinha is a self-proclaimed fact-checker who has co-founded an alleged ‘fact-checking’ website AltNews along with someone who is now accused of harassing a minor girl.

It is rather interesting that a “fact-checker” would, instead of calling out NDTV, go after the Home Minister who has instructed his police to lodge a case against NDTV, that spread extremely communally sensitive news.

Let us examine just how damaging the NDTV fake news was and how that episode progressed.

Tanishq released an advertisement on the 9th of October that showed a pregnant Hindu woman being wowed by her Muslim mother-in-law organising a god-bharai ceremony for her. The Hindu woman looked legitimately shocked that the Muslim mother-in-law was celebrating a ritual that was limited to Hindus households and not Muslim ones. The mother-in-law in-turn tells the shocked Hindu daughter-in-law that while this ceremony is not celebrated in Muslim households, every household follows the ‘rasam’ of making their daughters happy.

All well and good. The only issue with the ad? It portrayed a rather utopian image of inter-faith marriages, that too, right after a Hindu boy was murdered by the Muslim family of his girlfriend just for the crime of being in love with a Muslim girl. Recently, family members of a 20-year-old girl have alleged that one Salman entrapped their daughter, forced her to convert to Islam and marry her. In September, an aspiring model Pooja committed suicide after her husband allegedly forced her to adopt Islam.

The reality of inter-faith marriages in India is far from what Tanishq wanted to portray. Hindu girls and men are often murdered brutally and tortured to convert to Islam. Hundreds of such cases have been documented and one doesn’t even have to travel too far back in time to find such cases. Only recently, a girl was beheaded in Uttar Pradesh by her Muslim husband after she had refused to convert to Islam.

Reeling under such news and being constantly humiliated with their daughters and sons being tortured and murdered, Hindus reacted strongly to the ad by Tanishq and said that it tacitly promoted love-jihad. Essentially, it was an ad that intended to tells Hindu girls that they can find happiness in places where historically, Hindu girls have often found torture and humiliation.

Post the outrage, the ad was taken down after a half-baked statement by Tanishq.

This was, of course, widely seen as a victory for The Hindu side. After the ad was pulled down, the usual trope of how Hindus were bigots was started by the liberal establishment. But when that failed to really stick, NDTV decided to concoct damaging fake news.

NDTV, on the 14th of October “broke the news” that a Tanishq showroom in Gujarat was ‘attacked’ and the manager was forced to issue an apology for the ad.

A few minutes later, NDTV put up a video wherein one of NDTV’s employees claimed that a ‘mob attack’ took place on 12th evening, the day social media users were angered with the advertisement.

Now, when one says that a showroom was mob attacked, the message one conveys is obviously that unbridled violence was unleashed upon the showroom and its employees and after the violence, they were forced to issue an apology.

Soon after, in fact, minutes later, the NDTV fake news was completely decimated. The manager of the store in a conversation with Dr Neel, a netizen, said that he had not been attacked by anyone. The police too confirmed that there was absolutely no “mob attack” or violence that took place at the Tanishq showroom. They said that they were asked to apologise and had received some threats, but there was absolutely no mob violence. In fact, even the store owner had come on record to say that their store was not attacked.

First, NDTV said the store was attacked. Then, it said it was mob attacked. Then, NDTV changed their story to say that the mob pasted an apology note on the store. And finally, they said that the store had received a threat call.

The aim of NDTV was rather simple – create a sectarian divide and flare up communal sentiments. You see, when there is news of a mob-attack, every side gets riled up and the chances of a communal flare-up go up exponentially. It is thus said that before posting news of any such “mob attack”, the news must be thoroughly verified as such fake news can be truly detrimental to law and order in that area.

NDTV, however, was far more focussed on defaming Hindus and using the Tanishq saga to peddle their nefarious agenda as it was about the truth.

That NDTV “corrected itself” after several failed attempts is no credit to them. In fact, their anchor even brazened it out saying that when NDTV said the store was attacked, they meant that there was a ‘strong disagreement’ and technically, that can too be categorised as a mob attack.

With such communally sensitive fake news being peddled by NDTV, for a ‘fact-checker’ to pass it off so lightly only means that the ‘fact-checker’ himself has a strong enough bias that lets him overlook dangerous fake news being peddled by channels that are ideologically aligned to him.

As for priorities, it is important to note that the Gujarat police had already said that they were monitoring the showroom and providing adequate security in the light of alleged “threats”. It was NDTV itself that posted that the area was being patrolled by the police after they got the story more-or-less right after several attempts at spreading fake news.

story by NDTV

Thus, when the police is already doing what is needed, Pratik indeed tacitly also spread fake news by saying that the Gujarat administration was doing nothing about these alleged threats. And while they were providing security to the showroom, the Home Minister must rightly focus also on penalising a channel that wanted to spread communal disharmony by spreading fake news.

Propaganda website AltNews has been largely peddled as an authentic source of fact-checks by the entire Left cabal. Their articles are peddled by any anti-government, anti-Hindu riffraff that the ecosystem has to offer and they often claim that their method is rather elaborate and authentic. With patrons like Arundhati Roy, who regularly speaks in a language that can only be called one that resonates with Naxals and every element that wishes to tear India apart, AltNews has gained a reputation amongst right-thinking individuals as a mouthpiece of Islamists. The so-called fact-checking website regularly furthers fake news, obfuscates the truth, concocts details to shield Islamists and sometimes, even creates fake news simply to fact check it later. 

Interestingly, exactly the same can also be said about NDTV. NDTV has gained propriety for peddling fake news, and it too, like AltNews, tries its absolute best to shield Islamists and defame Hindus.

That AltNews and NDTV are ideologically aligned comes as no surprise to anyone. Afterall, Altnews did help foreign publication water down the Pulwama terror attack and even gave a clean chit to Tahir Hussain apart from being caught regularly for spreading fake news, much like NDTV. That Pratik Sinha thinks that NDTV should get a free pass after spreading communally sensitive fake news also doesn’t come as a surprise to anyone. What does come as a surprise is the sheer brazenness of the Left to still consider AltNews a hill that they wish to die on.

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OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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