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India Today takes Rajdeep Sardesai off air, docks month’s salary for tweet on farmer’s death

Rajdeep Sardesai, India Today consulting editor, tweeted that a farmer was allegedly killed in police firing in the tractor rally. Police later said he died when his tractor overturned.

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New Delhi: Senior journalist and news anchor Rajdeep Sardesai has been taken off air for two weeks and a month’s salary was deducted by the India Today group for his tweet that claimed a farmer was shot dead in police firing during the tractor rally on 26 January, ThePrint has learnt.

In the now-deleted tweet, Sardesai had said: “One person, 45-year-old Navneet, killed allegedly in police firing at ITO. Farmers tell me: the ‘sacrifice’ will not go in vain.”

Besides the tweet, Sardesai, while speaking to another India Today reporter from the ground, said on his show the deceased, Navneet Singh, would become a symbol for the agitating farmers and they would not leave till they got “justice for Navneet”.

Sardesai, who is also the consulting editor of India Today, retracted his tweet on the same day and subsequently tweeted a video, saying: “While the farm protestors claim that the deceased Navneet Singh was shot at by Delhi Police while on a tractor, this video clearly shows that the tractor overturned while trying to break the police barricades. The farm protestors allegations don’t stand. Post mortem awaited.”

He also said: “…the police have shown great restraint despite grave provocation by the farm protestors in ITO/Red Fort area: they fired tear gas, no evidence of bullets fired although farm protestors claimed otherwise. Amidst claims and counter claims, the police action needs to be commended.”

The Delhi Police, meanwhile, reportedly released a video showing Singh speeding and running over barricades with his tractor, resulting in the vehicle overturning.

A post-mortem report revealed that the protester died due to a “traumatic injury above the left side of his skull from where his brain started oozing out”.

ThePrint reached Sardesai via WhatsApp for a comment, but he declined to speak on the matter. 

When ThePrint reached The India Today group, an email from their corporate communication desk said: “Disciplinary action for breach of our code of conduct is a confidential matter and we would like to refrain from commenting on this.”

‘Repeat offender’

Following the development, BJP leader Amit Malviya said Sardesai should have been fired as he is a “repeat offender”

Delhi BJP leader Kapil Mishra Wednesday tweeted, “Rajdeep has lied… his lies have been exposed through police and video. Rajdeep was inciting attack on Delhi Police.”

The hashtag #ArrestRajdeepNow also started trending on Twitter. 

Also read: Rajdeep questions Yechury over Oppn tactics, Mirror Now examines Andhra’s ‘mystery disease’


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  1. It is surprising that well established journos resort to quick publicity themes;right or wrong, using their knowledge of language one way or the other to misguide their readers( you can say their customers,)who pay for their news. This is a mass cheating if news are not correctly put forward or placed before the readers a different or wrong way which convey the messages other than truth. May be to amass more wealth and simultaneous losing the real value of their knowledge a and truth,which only leads to ultimate success. This is unethical and criminal. This should be avoided.

  2. Rajdeep is a rascal. He should be slapped with chappals right and left. And he should not be in any TV at all. If he is on a channel, all advertisers should boycott that channel. He should join Barkha.

  3. Exposure of lies when attempted by some media journalist surely would be shot by the modiraj. No exception to Rajdeep. He did not manufacture the lie. He reported both from farmers and police. Police conspired to allow their beloved intruders in the disguise of protester to lalkila has also been published in media. Now they are allowing BJP hooligans while cruel enough to disallowing drinking water supply to the protesting site. Is that untrue. All journalist can’t be bjp spokesperson like Arnab Goswami.

    • People like Rajdeep and Arnab will go to any extent to sway the narrative to suit their prejudices and ideology. Though it has been going on a milder scale since the beginning of journalism in India, mostly leaning towards the leftist and socialist narratives, there is a strong pushback now, albeit quite vulgar at times.

  4. there r many journalist and channels running with definate propaganda against rulling party and modi government, in opposing modi they became antinational, must be punished legally for instigating violence.

  5. The truth will come out as there videos of a number of people being being shot unfortunately india is a country that is always in denial and of people saying the opposite even when the truth is right in front of them

  6. Even in USA incidence he was asking instigating questions and he hit that indian origin person but claimed he was hit, a repeated offender.

  7. Outright committed congress supporting , even in USA incidence he was asking instigating questions and he hit that indian origin person but claimed he was hit, a repeated offender.

  8. Padmashree awardee Shri Rajdeep Sardesai is a serial tweeter of fake news. In August 2020, he tweeted that former President Shri Pranab Mukherjee had passed away, when he was very much alive, though seriously unwell. On 23rd January this year he tweeted that President Kovind had garlanded a photo of Bengali actor Shri Prosenjit Chatterjee instead of that of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, whose 125th birth anniversary it was. Of course, this news was fake. Now this one on the death of a protestor. If this is how senior journalists do their reporting is it any wonder why the credibility of media is so low. Is there any system of recalling the Padmashree?

  9. Rajdeep has as expected gone into hiding..its so convenient that media allows their counterparts to hide and probably go on a vacation after committing a crime…had it been anyone else he would have been hounded by you sold out media personnel..Why have you guys (media) desisted from demanding quick action and have refrained from putting the Central Government on notice for not taking any action against him..wait you guys in fact condemned FIRs registered against the culprits..have some shame if you can afford it…media has no credibility or may be you have as much of it as the “Big Boss” show….better you put a disclaimer with all your reporting “WORK OF FICTION”..that’s your forte

  10. Rajdeep Sardesai should himself leave.. He is not a News Reporter. He is a fuel to fire and has hurt feelings of many Indians. On the other hand we have a good example of Rahul Kanwal.. India Today Management needs to relook into its structure.

  11. He was cut short during his interviews with Late Pranb da and Hon PM Modiji. This foul mouthed jurno has no locus standi in journalist circles. He is anti Govt and anti Indian. Remember this fellow also was caught at the wrong foot in US during PM’s visit. He should have been sacked not advised for 2 weeks rest.

  12. What can you expect from such rental person ? India Today has to sack this crucked fellow immediatly.

  13. Please make a correction to your report. You say that the police LATER SAID that the person died etc.
    This is incorrect. The police did not say this later. The police issued the correct position as soon as Mr. Rajdeep made his pronouncement on tv. In fact, even on the spot, Mr. Rajdeep had talked to a few police and ALREADY knew the correct position. Yet he went ahead to make his false statement on live tv as also issue a false tweet. Of course he tried to hide behind the usual cheat word ‘ALLEGED’. No one then, no one now, thinks that this was an innocent use of the word ‘ALLEGED’. The false information was clearly put forth by Mr. Rajdeep with the clear intention of exciting more violence.

  14. Please stop addressing this guy as Journalist. His tweet could have caused bloodshed & rioting on a massive scale. Journalism is in danger because of such people. My advice to media houses is “Keep Safe Distance” from such people.

  15. permanent retirement of (so called) colored journalists like him is better idea. Like Ashutosh he should join political party of his choice, until then he will keep spreading lies in guise of his profession.

  16. If rajdeep sardesai and other journalist like him who support RIOTERS by justifying their actions by spreading and inventing fake news are not punished such rented journalist will continue spreading FAKE NEWS .

    Similar attempts have been made by journalists in case of DELHI and Banglore RIOTS and abusive language against HINDUISM has been touted as freedom of speech by rabid ultra left wing radical journalist.

  17. Rajdeep is fast losing credibility.

    It’s no longer about who can deliver the news the fastest but about who can do it most accurately and Rajdeep via his tweets has often been found wanting.

  18. Rajdeep is at forefront of India today and their gold standard Of journalism -they are news traders ,for a price or Padma awards they can do anything-for congress or Pakistan or china,they are pretty selective in their preference.

  19. I saw on TV when he was speaking to India Today reporter desperately trying to make instigate farmers and viewers and at that moment I was thinking to myself: the brazenness of this gutter crawler presstitute is amazing.

  20. Mr. Sardesai’s coverage of the Gujarat riots was just as false, misleading and coloured. He is the perfect example of ideology trumping over professionalism. In his eagerness to please his liberal/secular bosses and prove his own liberal/secular credentials, journalism simply got reduced to a mere tool to reach an end. A sad story indeed.
    No wonder Mr. Arnab Goswami learnt his journalism from Mr. Rajdeep Sardesai.

  21. Commendable action by India Today management. Rajdeep Sardesai has been engaged in this kind of journalism for over twenty years now. Watch any video of his on Post-Godhra riots. The nemises has caught up with him.

  22. Not only Rajdeep there are many other such rascals who want to set the nation on fire just because they are not able to digest Modi being in power. The corrupt UPA and congress in particular was in power for more than 60 plus years but I have”nt seen any journo worth his salt taking on congress over its corruption and minority appeasement. In fact Rajdeep had the in camera proof of the cash for votes scam which threatened the UPA, MMS’s govt but characterless and integrity deficit character that he is, he hid this proof from investigating authorities so that his favourite party could continue to remain in power. Such people should never be given any kind of gainful employment by any nationalist Indian but I know that there are many like The Wire, The Print and other platforms who will be happy to give space to this scoundrel. Shame on him.

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