Mrinal Pande

Aadhaar case: Why Express blanked police statement?

India Express, the pallbearer, err…flagbearer of Indian Mainstream Media, for two days running on its front page (there would be more Front Pages in coming days, be assured) has gravely stated (in its editorial) how the authorities are browbeating the journalists of this country.

The matter relates to a Tribune story in which one of its reporter could gain access to as many Aadhaar numbers as desired by buying a login and password for only Rs 500 only. Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), Aadhaar’s regulatory body, in retaliation has gone to police, and lo and behold, all hell has broken loose. Indian Express, along with press bodies and Amnesty International, not to forget the Congress and other opposition skunks, are beating their breasts in mourning.

A few questions to these pall-bearers are in order. Let’s begin with Indian Express. My beloved newspaper, why have you chosen to blank (sic) the statement of Delhi Police of Sunday which could have answered most of your insinuations misleading your innocent readers?

The Police in its official statement has stated that UIDAI had filed a “open-ended” complaint with the former’s cyber cell which the Police later converted into an FIR. Why then defame a regulatory body with a “crime” they never committed? Why hide the facts?

Two, while you cry hoarse and run your throat dry, why not report that the FIR says “unknown” under the column “accused”? Why hide the facts?

When UIDAI hasn’t named Tribune or its reporter as “accused” how could it be an attack on the freedom of the press? Could reporting a sequence of events be construed as an attack on free press?

(We must chip in and be on our feet to applaud the Police. When fake MSMs are misleading the public and avoid/neglect official reactions, the regulatory authorities increasingly are resorting to Social Media, press conferences, advertisements and official statements to convey their side of the story. Way to go, folks).

Three, Indian Express actually should admonish fellow Tribune and its reporter for wasting Rs 500 when the allowed access is only to help personnel/officials address the grievances of citizens. Without security measures—highly encrypted ones—such as biometrics and iris, the newspaper report is not a “data breach” and can only be described as “misreporting” which the UIDAI has dryly noted.

Now let’s come to other jokers. Google practically has no trace of Editors’ Guild of India hard as I tried. No website. All I could do was to find it has just 2 tweets (yes, TWO!) since its’ joining in 2016. Such media-shy body is the custodian of free media in this country. The most my search could yield was a 2014 report which showed Barkha Dutt, Shekhar Gupta, Seema Chisti, Kumar Ketkar among others as its working committee members. And oh yes, Mrinal Pande as its specially invited member.

Indian Express quotes Editors’ Guild extensively and the latter is shown using grave words such as “booked” and “penalized” and “persecuted” when its just an FIR (converted too) and doesn’t name anyone as “accused.” Given the gravitas of this jury if it still happens to be around, you would believe the basic understanding of IPC is not beyond them. Surely, I do trust my washerman to come out with flying colours if he was subjected to such a test.

Such distinguished people ought to ask Indian Express–and themselves—whether betraying paying readers with fake news, and mounting a campaign in its support, amount to “cheating or loot” under the Indian Penal Code.

You also have Indian Women’s Press Corps in protest. Before you express your surprise at what’s our women journos grouse is in this case, you must be told the Tribune reporter happens to be a woman. Next time issues of “triple talaq” and other such matters flicker in your mind, my advisory is don’t look for the reaction of this august body. You see, women with pen aren’t the same as women under burqa.

And oh yes, there is Amnesty International too (Sorry folks, there was no prize for guessing). An important tycoon of “human rights industry.” An organization which is openly accused of being a “servant of US Warmongering Foreign Policy”, a ‘soft-power” of post-War colonialism, is outraged at the UIDAI move to protect its shed.

Let me share a fact-sharing website, Mental Floss, to bring a few truths on Amnesty International to light. The organization was inspired by the arrest of two Portuguese students in 1960 which may never have happened! This very organization had accused Nelson Mandela of promoting violence and didn’t campaign for his release in 1963-64. It concedes it takes money from governments “in some cases.”

Jumla_Man: Why reviling Modi isn’t working

Attempts to burn Narendra Modi at the stake are not new.

Those who call him “Tughlaqi” and “Feku”—such as Congress’ Digvijaya Singh—apparently don’t see the contradiction. You can’t be the two at the same time.

Then there are those who lie freely. Remember when Sagarika Ghose pooh-poohed Narendra Modi’s pro-poor image by pointing out his Louis Vuitton shawl—only to be told by the company that they don’t make such shawls!

Rajdeep Sardesai, in an HT Summit, called Modi on stage a “mass murderer” and “hero of hatred.” (watch this video). He took a call which lawfully is one of investigating agencies and Courts and who, incidentally, have ruled in Modi’s favour.

Rahul Gandhi calls Modi a peddler of lies. He cites the Rs 15 lakh-in-each-bank account lie which has been attributed to Modi ad nauseam. There is this exact video on 15-lakh and viewers can see it for themselves how Modi’s speech has been twisted by the Left-Liberal ecosystem.

(It’s the same which this shameless mafia had spread about Atal Bihari Vajpayee calling Indira Gandhi a “Durga”. View Vajpayee’s denial and judge it for yourself).

Rahul once termed Modi’s dispensation as “khool ki dalali” and which was similar to the spin his mother Sonia Gandhi once used for Modi, namely “Maut Ka Saudagar.”

Sitaram Yechury, CPI (M) general secretary, called Modi no better than a “pick-pocket” of people’s money in January this year. Nobody asked him—nor he was decent enough to apologize—when such “cheated” people brought BJP to power in UP by a historic mandate in a matter of few weeks.

Arvind Kejriwal has no compunction in calling Modi a “coward and a psychopath.” An Imam in this country announces fatwa and a Rs 25 lakh cash award for anyone who could blacken Modi’s face.

It is this same set of people who call Modi anti-farmers. Those in search of truth could easily make up this mind by knowing how transformative this government has been to farms and farmers.

Never ever a public figure has been subjected to so vile lies and propaganda as Modi.  The filth by Digvijaya Singh, Manish Tewari and Mrinal Pande is fit for Huns and barbarians.

Lately, there has been a particular surge in branding Modi as a “jumla_Man”.  Twitter abounds in hashtags such as Jumla, Feku, Jumlanomics, JumlaMan, Jumla Diwas, Jumla Maharaj, National Pheku Diwas and National Jumla Day. Everyday on WhatsApp you come across an image portraying Modi as a “feku.”

Let’s examine whether this (a) “Jumla_Man” image fits PM Modi; (b) and whether it’s an image which people have come to accept or reject at large.

Jumla_Man: Propaganda and Reality:

Quality Council of India (QCI) over six months carried out a massive survey of rural sanitation—Swacchh Survekshan Gramin research covered 140,000 households across 700 districts. Each household was personally visited. Every household was geo-tagged. The positive results are staggering: Nine out of 10 households now have toilets and they use it—they are not turned into stores as propagandists claim. So are the results of 53 out of 74 cities surveyed. The draining cost on health due to open defecation, faeces in groundwater, encephalitis, diarrhea is being tackled head on.

That’s Swacchh Bharat for you.

Modi government has come a long way in providing a basic safety net to every Indian. Be it food, electricity, housing, toilets, gas-based cooking, insurance coverage, micro-loans, all-weather road or some employment.

The financial inclusion drive through Jan Dhan-Aadhar-Mobile (JAM) trinity has removed leakages, ghost accounts and fake beneficiaries from Direct Benefit Transfers (DBT),

Massive infrastructure build up is being reflected in railways, national highways, rural roads, housing, air connectivity and rural electrification.

National Investment and Infrastructure Fund is providing equity-risk capital with global investors.

Atal Innovation Mission scheme is rarely written about. And same about Mudra Programme and India Aspiration Fund. The success of StartUpIndia could be measured if one visits IIT campuses. The strides in renewable energy, electrical vehicles and financial services are not mentioned.

Bankruptcy Code and an Alternative Assets Industry is now finally in place.

And we haven’t come to talking about Surgical Strikes, Doklam and mass cleansing of terrorists from Jammu & Kashmir!

Jumla_Man Branding: Very few believe it!!!

I looked up at hashtags such as Jumla, Pheku, Jumlanomics, JumlaMan, Jumla Diwas, JumlaMaharaj etc on twitter and was surprised at the low traction it has managed in three years.  The #JumlaMaharaj, for example, initiated by Congress spokesperson Sanjay Jha has only 85 tweets so far. JumlaJayanti has been there for over two years. The others too don’t have the traction.

Every trick—and more—have been tried in the last three years. From doubting surgical strikes to EVM; to dragging Modi’s mother and wife with fake news;  to running down country itself by hobnobbing with the Chinese and in US.

What more proof do you want of this insidious industry as it can’t find even one good thing in the Modi government which is massively backed by people of this country, sweeping one state after another with record margins???

And what do you call them?

“Feku.”

MSM Fake News Monitor: Indian Express on BHU

(Facebook today came out with a full-page advertisement in Indian Express (September 26, 2017) with 10 tools for a reader to check if a news is fake. It asks readers to check headlines, evidence, photos, source to spot a Fake News. It’s a good reference point to monitor our English national dailies—Lutyens’ Media– who abound in Fake News. It’s a start today and we would gradually warm up to daily planting of Fake News by mainstream media.)

Indian Express today had 7 stories on Banaras Hindu University (BHU) violence, running from its Front Page to multiple pages inside its Delhi edition. It fails the Facebook Fake News Challenge on multiple counts.

EVIDENCE: A front page piece attributes several issues which girl hostellers face in BHU. There is not a SINGLE source attributed!!! Further there is no attempt to investigate—in this or in any other BHU story in Indian Express today if there is truth in (a) Outside BHU elements creating ruckus; (b) attempt to destroy the University property; (c) police targeting only these “troublemakers” (d) BHU Vice-Chancellor alleging protests politically motivated.

Interestingly, THE PROTESTORS THEMSELVES SAY THE OUTSIDE ELEMENTS HAVE CAUSED THE TROUBLE!!! Why Express has made no attempt to investigate it? Or other news reports? (see image)?

SOURCE:  Seema Chisti writes thus on Edit Page in today’s Express: “BHU has pushed for no Wi-Fi (How can the new VC risk Wi-Fis, as girls would watch porn). Meat-eating must be curbed and early bedtimes enforced. The VC, who defended RSS ideas, was keen to stamp out any trouble in BHU.”

The Facebook Fake News Challenge asks readers to be sceptical of the source you don’t trust. Seema Chisti falls in this bracket. She never mentions she is Seema Chisti Yechury, wife of Communist powerhead, Sitaram Yechury. Readers can’t be faulted if she is perceived as part of Communist propaganda machine.

One, there is Wi-Fi in girls’ hostel (so they can watch porn, Ms Chisti). Two, meat-eating is not curbed (Extra Rs 30 ensure it); Three, early bedtimes are not enforced–Girl students can take permission from BHU authorities and stay out as long as they want.

Let’s not even stoop to reply her charge on the BHU VC having RSS leaning (And why readers must not presume you are a Communist loudspeaker, Ms Chisti?)

HEADLINES:  The Front Page headline of “Why women BHU students are separate and unequal” is classically ambiguous. You can interpret it both ways—that WHY SHOULD girls have separate rules or WHY SHOULD NOT there be separate rules.. But for the standard tactics of misleading headlines, I would give a more concrete example.

On Page 11 of Indian Express, one of its exclusive story has this headline: “Rohingya illegal, purse-strings open for Lankan Tamil refugees”. Now this headline clearly aims to influence the readers that the Modi government is discriminatory; it has one policy for Rohingya Muslims and another for Non-Muslims. What it shamelessly hides is that Rohingyas are ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS and not REFUGEES! So the two instances can’t be compared. Unless the newspaper sees no difference between apples and oranges.

As an aside, click on this link to see how from politicians (Ashok Gehlot, Sanjay Sharma), to journalists (Mrinal Pande, Swati Chaturvedi) to lawyers (Prashant Bhushan) have blatantly peddled lies on the BHU affair and make up your own mind on these Fake News Promoters.

(Post Script: Mainstream Media Fake News Monitor isn’t exclusive to this writer. Any discerning reader who spots Fake News in our mainstream media can use the platform and share it with others—but don’t forget to tag the headline MSM Fake News Monitor. Only then we would know the extent to which Lutyens Media lies).