On Saturday (July 17) night, Samajwadi Party (SP) leader Akhilesh Yadav shared a misleading image to suggest that a police officer was misbehaving and assaulting a woman in the Kanpur Dehat district of Uttar Pradesh. Even though the claims of Yadav were proved to be false, the media continues to spread the lies.
He wrote, “Some police officials, who are working on the behest of the BJP, are tarnishing the image of the Uttar Pradesh police. Under the rule of the BJP, there is no dearth of lawlessness. Highly condemnable.” The image shared by Akhilesh Yadav gave the impression that a cop was sitting atop a woman and assaulting her.
Although the Kanpur Dehat police issued a written and video statement debunking the misleading nature of his tweet, mainstream media portals continued to amplify the lies of Akhilesh Yadav. Prominent leftist news portal NDTV published an article titled, “UP: Video of a Police Inspector sitting on a woman goes viral, Akhilesh Yadav hits back” on the issue. Throughout the article, NDTV subtly cast aspersions on the integrity of the police. It was only towards the end that the police clarification was added while the headline conveyed the falsehoods.
A similar attempt was made by the Indian Express to give credence to the misleading claims of the Samajwadi party leader. It primarily focused on the statement of the woman, who was seen pulling the cop by the collar, and less on putting forth the obvious facts of the case.
Hindustan Times also pulled off a similar propaganda agenda.
The Truth behind the incident
According to the Kanpur Dehat police, the Station-in-charge (Bhognipur police station) Mahendra Patel had gone to the Durgadaspur village to capture one Shivam Yadav. He had reportedly threatened a candidate in Panchayat elections. At that time, the wife and mother of the accused intervened to protect Yadav from arrest. Arti Yadav, the wife of the accused, pulled Mahendra Patel by the collar to the ground.
A Twitter user (@isinghDeepanshu) had tweeted an 8-second video of the incident, which shows the woman pulling the police officer by his neck and not the other way around.
A similar video was also shared by the Official Twitter handle of Kanpur Dehat police. In another video, the woman was seen trying to strip off her blouse in a bid to implicate the police official. A man was also seen provoking the cop, while he stood his ground in a non-aggressive manner. From the videos, it appeared that the police officer was the victim and not the aggressor as claimed by the Samajwadi party leader.