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Photos that dishonoured COVID deaths, shamed India, by photographer who was murdered by Taliban, win Pulitzer

People all over the world died, and are still dying in large numbers since the COVID-19 pandemic began in 2020. But the vulturism and morbid obsession over their funeral pyres is somehow seen only in India, for Western publications that could not really care to accord dignity to Indians, especially, to Hindus.

On Monday (April 9), deceased Reuters photojournalist Danish Siddiqui was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for the second time. He was posthumously felicitated with the award for ‘Feature Photography’ alongside 3 others, namely, Adnan Abidi, Sanna Irshad Mattoo, and Amit Dave.

Danish Siddiqui mocked India’s Covid-19 deaths through his pictures

During the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, Danish Siddiqui opportunistically minted the misery of people for his own benefit. He had posted multiple images of burning pyres of deceased Covid-19 patients without any regard for the privacy or sentiments of the family members of the deceased.

In a tweet on April 22 last year, the Reuters photojournalist wrote, “As India posted world record of COVID cases funeral pyres of people, who died due to the coronavirus disease were pictured at a crematorium ground in New Delhi, April 22, 2021.”

Siddiqui took pride in his insensitive coverage of the pandemic, which eventually won him the Pulitzer Prize. His pictures were weaponised to negate the all-out efforts made by the Indian government and countless frontline workers to contain the outbreak of the Wuhan Coronavirus.

How Reuters had cashed on burning Hindus, denying them dignity even in death

People all over the world died, and are still dying in large numbers since the COVID-19 pandemic began in 2020. But the vulturism and morbid obsession over their funeral pyres is somehow seen only in India, for Western publications that could not really care to accord dignity to Indians, especially, to Hindus.

While many complimented Danish for his heroism, Reuters milked the images of Hindus being cremated to the hilt. This morbid obsession that Reuters seems to harbour of watching Hindus burn was not related to telling people about the COVID-19 deluge.

To write about the COVID-19 deluge and tell people just how alarming the situation was, one did not need to splash images of burning Hindus on their front page, all over their website and in multiple articles published. But Reuters would rather splash images of crematoriums, denying Hindus dignity in death.

Danish Siddiqui was brutally killed by the Taliban

Danish Siddiqui was killed by the Taliban on July 16, 2021, during an assignment in the war-torn country of Afghanistan. He had travelled with the Afghan National Forces to the Spin Boldak region to cover the clashes between Afghan forces and the Islamists.

A report by PTI said that the Taliban attacked the Afghan forces when they reached a customs post. The Afghan forces split up, leaving Siddiqui with three other Afghan troops. During this attack, Siddiqui and Afghan forces were hit by shrapnel, who escaped to a local mosque where they received first aid.

Soon, the Taliban got to know that the Indian journalist was taking refuge inside the mosque. The local investigation suggested that the Taliban attacked the mosque only because of Siddiqui’s presence there.

“Siddiqui was alive when the Taliban captured him. The Taliban verified Siddiqui’s identity and then executed him, as well as those with him. The commander and the remainder of his team died as they tried to rescue him,” a report in the Washington Examiner said.

It was also reported that the Islamists had mutilated his body simply because he was an Indian. Afghan Army Commander Bilal Ahmed had disclosed that the Taliban first shot Danish and then ran a car over him.

The Taliban had mowed his lifeless body with the car, displaying their hatred for Indians. The revelations by the Afghan commander came to the fore when certain sections of the “liberal-secular” media in the country were absolving the crimes of the terrorist group by claiming that the Muslim photojournalist was killed during a crossfire.

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OpIndia Staff
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