By Abdul Bari Masoud
Bhopal/ New Delhi: It seems to be a pattern in a section of Hindi media to spread fake news or to give false anti-Muslim spin to any incident which even does not remotely concern with the Muslim community.
Recently “Dainik Bhaskar” one of the largest circulated Hindi daily published from multiple centres, published a report on vaccination in Muslim neighborhood of Bhopal which is capital of Madhya Pradesh. The report is a fabrication of the reporter’s biased-mind who attempted to present the Muslims of this locality in bad light.
Bhaskar published a highly objectionable news story with a very misleading headline “Jis Jehangirabad main sampling team dekh kar chako- chure nikal letay they, ab wahan 5 hazar lagwa chuke hain vaccine” (people used to take out knives seeing the sampling team, now 5, 000 people vaccinated).
The four column-story is about Jehangirabad neighbourhood which is one of the biggest localities of Bhopal, has nearly 1 lakh population, and is predominantly Muslim locality. The news story suggests that ‘people in this locality took out knives when they saw health-admin teams’, as if there were so many such cases. How this blatant lie of this newspaper and the reporter was exposed by the Bhopal Police.
When this provocative story published meant to tarnish the image of the community, a young activist Anas Ali rose to the occasion. He did not take it lied down. He approached the police station through RTI under which this locality comes. He sought the information from the police, if there were any such incidents of attack on the health team taking place? The police stated in the reply to RTI that ‘NO, no such case has happened’.
Dainik Bhaskar reporter had fabricated the news; it was a figment of his biased-mind towards the Muslims. Anas Ali said the story would have created a negative image of the locality and would have demonized people of the locality. The residents of the locality would have faced problems in getting admissions to their children, other things as the manufactured story suggests that anti-socials lived there, he added.