The National Commission for Minorities (NCM) has Monday issued a notice to India Today for wrongly attributing a quote to RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat on ‘superiority of Hindus’. A complaint was filed against the media house earlier for the same. The NCM has asked India Today to revert in 15 days so that the matter can be placed before the commission for consideration. The commission has taken cognisance of the complaint it received regarding a Tweet posted by India Today on October 10, in connection with an alleged statement of RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat.
The complainant, one RP Singh had brought up the matter before the commission for consideration. Sharing a screenshot of India Today Tweet posted by the media house on its official Twitter handle on October 10, RP Singh had asked NCM to take cognisance of the fake news posted by India Today regarding the RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat. Singh said that though the media house had later taken down the Tweet, it’s screenshot will be highly misused to spread communal disharmony.
.@NMinorities should take congzinance of this false news posted by @IndiaToday on their twitter handle, although latter on it was removed but it’s screenshot will be highly misused to spread communal disharmony. Please accept this as my formal complaint. @Rai7manjit @AtifBjp pic.twitter.com/J5yCk4A9qu— R.P. Singh: ਆਰ ਪੀ ਸਿੰਘ (@rpsinghkhalsa) October 10, 2020
While filing a complaint with the NCM, RP Singh also shared an excerpt from Mohan Bhagwat’s interview, highlighting how India Today had distorted the statement made by the RSS chief. He had urged Aroon Purie, the chairman of the India Today group to issue a statement retracting the fake Tweet and apologise publicly for the irresponsibility shown by his channel.
Mr. @aroonpurie please issue a statement retracting fake tweet posted by your organization & make a public apology for this irresponsible deduction that has sparked furore among the minorities. pic.twitter.com/HdL5ubwUMX— R.P. Singh: ਆਰ ਪੀ ਸਿੰਘ (@rpsinghkhalsa) October 10, 2020
Atif Rasheed, a BJP leader and a senior member of the National Commission for Minorities (NCM) had taken to Twitter to acknowledge RP Singh’s complaint against India Today.
How India Today distorted Mohan Bhagwat’s statement by sharing an incomplete version on Twitter
Sharing a link of one of its article, India Today, in its tweet dated October 10 quoted Mohan Bhagwat as saying: “Our Constitution did not say that only Hindus can stay here; hereafter only Hindus will be heard here; if you want to stay here, then you have to accept the superiority of Hindus”.
The media house had tweeted an incomplete statement by RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat from his interview with Vivek Magazine, which gave out an entirely wrong intent and impression behind the statement.
Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh chief Mohan Bhagwat was interviewed by Vivek, a Hindi magazine based in Maharashtra on October 10. In this interview, Bhagwat said that Muslims in India are the “most content in the world”. He attributed this to India’s ‘inherent nature being Hindu’ which had created a safe space for the members of the minority community.
India Today also published a report on this with a title, “Indian Muslims most content in the world, says RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat” quoting Bhagwat’s statement.
Though in the report, India Today included the entire statement made by Mohan Bhagwat, while sharing the report on Twitter, the media giant shared an incomplete statement by the RSS chief, which gave it an entirely different meaning. In its tweet, India Today wrote, “Our Constitution did not say that only Hindus can stay here; hereafter only Hindus will be heard here; if you want to stay here, then you have to accept the superiority of Hindus,” Bhagwat said.”
After backlash, the media house quietly deleted the tweet, without even issuing an apology for the same.
The full interview of the RSS chief can be heard here: