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NCPCR chief Priyank Kanoongo busts propaganda by ‘The Hindu’ and ‘Times of India’ in reports on Rahul Gandhi naming a minor rape victim, shares facts

Priyank Kanoongo said, "These news reports should be included in the curriculum of journalism students as an example of setting a narrative by doing selective reporting."

On Thursday (25th January), National Commission for Protection Of Child Rights (NCPCR) Chairperson Priyank Kanoongo took to social media platform X to bunk the propaganda by ‘The Hindu‘ and ‘Times of India‘ while reporting about the case of Rahul Gandhi naming a minor rape victim. He shared facts about the case which were not covered in the news and also posed screenshots of the particular news items. He said that these news reports should be included in the curriculum of journalism students as an example of setting a narrative by doing selective reporting.

The headlines by both The Hindu and Times of India said that the Delhi High Court has disposed of a plea against Rahul Gandhi for disclosing the identity of a minor victim. This gave the impression that Rahul Gandhi has got relief from the court in the case. But the fact is, the PIL disposed only because the prayers made in the plea have already been fulfilled, and it does not mean any relief for Rahul Gandhi. As requested in the plea, an FIR has been lodged against Gandhi, and the tweet has been deleted. It has been already explained how this dismissal of the plea does not meany any clean chit for Rahul Gandhi.

Priyank Kanoongo wrote in his post, “These news reports should be included in the curriculum of journalism students as an example of setting a narrative by doing selective reporting. Let us tell you what was not written in these news reports.”

He further said, “Rahul Gandhi tweeted revealing the identity of the 9-year-old Dalit girl who was gang-raped and murdered in Delhi and refused to delete it and refused to accept the law of the country. Two years later, due to court pressure in a PIL, he shamelessly deleted the tweet. The PIL demanded the registration of an FIR against Rahul Gandhi. Delhi Police informed that FIR number 240/2021 has been registered against Rahul Gandhi under the POCSO Act, Juvenile Justice Act, and IPC. NCPCR and the petitioners are satisfied and therefore, the petition is terminated on the fulfilment of its purpose.”

Priyank Kanoongo further said, “The Arvind Kejriwal government of Delhi said in the High Court that there was no evidence of gang rape and murder with the child, the child died due to electrocution. This was done so that the POCSO charges in the case would be eliminated, and the FIR registered against Rahul Gandhi would be terminated and Rahul Gandhi would be saved from punishment. While the fact is that in the charge sheet of Delhi Police and the supplementary charge sheet, the gang rape and murder of the child has also been confirmed.”

He added, “Politics has fallen so low that the Delhi government has rejected the rape and murder of an innocent rape victim to maintain the alliance of criminals. But these shameless things are not published in the English newspaper of civilised society. Rather, criminals are given relief. Selective reporting on crimes against children must be stopped.”

What is the case?

On 24th January (Wednesday), the Delhi High Court dismissed a petition that sought registration of an FIR against Congress leader Rahul Gandhi for revealing the identity of an alleged rape victim in 2021. The court rejected the plea after taking note of the submissions made by the Congress leader, the city police and social media platform X. The bench of Acting Chief Justice Manmohan and Justice Manmeet PS Arora were hearing a 2021 petition by social activist Makarand Suresh Mhadlekar. He had sought an FIR against Gandhi in his case. 

Taking into account the arguments presented by the parties, the high court observed that the requests in the petition had been already addressed and resolved, thereby disposing of the plea. There were three requests made in the plea, action by NCPCR, deletion of the tweet, and an FIR by the police. Now it has been confirmed that all three have already been done. NCPCR had complained against Rahul Gandhi, after which the Delhi Police registered an FIR in September 2021, which was confirmed by the police in the court.

The news published by The Hindu was titled ‘High Court closes plea against Rahul Gandhi’. The news published by the Times of India was titled, ‘Relief for Rahul Gandhi in case over naming minor rape victim’. Notably, Delhi HC dismissed the plea against Rahul Gandhi for revealing the identity of a minor rape victim, but it’s not a clean chit even after deleting the tweet as FIR was registered.

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