BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra, who was recently asked to leave the NDTV 24×7 show by anchor Nidhi Razdan after he accused the channel of “having an anti-BJP agenda”, tried to get back at the channel on Monday. 

However, his efforts backfired when he shared a tweet without verifying the source.

Patra shared a news story by Pakistan daily ‘The Times of Islamabad‘ criticising Narendra Modi’s Make in India programme based on data, apparently sourced from NDTV.

While the news story was shared by the Pakistan daily’s official Twitter handle, Patra accused the report of being an “agenda”.

NDTV’s official Twitter handle immediately retorted saying Patra’s accusation against the channel was incorrect and asked him to issue a clarification. The channel said it was wrongly named in the headline by the Pakistan daily.

So here’s the confusion: The article was originally penned by former finance minister and Congress leader P Chidambaram in the Indian Express on June 11, 2017. 

However, at the time of republishing, The Times of Islamabad mistakenly cited NDTV as the source instead of Indian Express. After being caught out on Twitter by NDTV, the Pakistani daily updated the story on its site and apologised to NDTV.

A defiant Patra, however, did not respond to NDTV and instead defended his tweet:

To which NDTV news anchor replied:

  • In 2016, Patra, in order to score some big points during a debate on Times Now, showed a photoshopped image of Indian soldiers in Kargil.
  • A few days ago, Babul Supriyo posted a picture on Twitter, claiming it was the new bus stand in Rajkot. In reality, it was just the digital impression created through photoshop.
  • In 2014, MP Meenakshi Lekhi posted a message on Twitter celebrating news that India’s National Anthem was judged as the best anthem in the world by UNESCO. She later deleted her tweet.

Turns out The Times Of Islamabad is a fake news generator:

  • It was The Times of Islamabad, a Pakistani news website, that earlier started the infamous controversy around Arundhati Roy and Paresh Rawal. Their story titled “Even 70 lakh Indian Army cannot defeat Kashmiris: Arundhati Rai” had led to MP Paresh Rawal’s attack on Arundhati Roy.
  • The site is infamous for running fake news stories about the BJP.

The next time you see a link by this newspaper, check twice before sharing it. Is BJP listening?