That much of the Indian TV media doesn’t even pretend to bother about the truth anymore isn’t news. Still, every now and then, their sheer audacity to peddle lies and propaganda with a straight face leaves you stunned.
Since last night, some news outlets have gone to town declaring, with evident glee, that opposition MPs in Pakistan’s parliament shouted slogans hailing India’s prime minister during a raucous debate on Wednesday.
“'Modi, Modi' chants raised in Pakistan's National Assembly,’ declares the headline of a report on .
Rajat Sharma, the editor of India TV, devoted an entire segment of his primetime show to the “Modi, Modi” chants, playing video clips that he confidently declared were evidence of Narendra Modi being hailed in the neighbouring country’s parliament.
Times Now celebrated it as a “major embarrassment for the Imran Khan government”.
“Pakistan's parliament reverberated with 'Modi, Modi' chants,” the TV news channel declared, “forcing the country's foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi to lash out in anger”.
The channel’s sister organisation, the Economic Times, too ran with the story and posted it on Twitter.
The newspaper, however, took down the story and deleted the tweet later. Why?
Maybe they actually listened to the video they had put out. Or maybe they felt embarrassed after folks on Twitter pointed out that the Pakistani MPs weren’t shouting ‘Modi, Modi’, but ‘voting, voting’.
The MPs were demanding voting on a resolution condemning “the resurgence of blasphemous and Islamophobic acts by mischievous elements in some parts of the world", particularly in the wake of a French teacher’s murder by a Muslim extremist purportedly for showing his class supposedly blasphemous caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad, reported. It also expressed concern at Islamophobic “hatemongering” by leaders such as French president Emmanuel Macron.
Now that it’s clear that India TV and Times Now lied, you would expect them to rectify their mistake – if it was a mistake, that’s, and not done deliberately for purposes of propaganda. Well, don’t hold your breath. They haven't done so until now, although they have been alerted to it, and publicly.
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