India Today Penalises Sardesai for His Claim on Farmer’s Death During Tractor Rally


Rajdeep Sardesai.

According to The Wire, the channel has taken him off air for two weeks and deducted one-month salary

Team Clarion

NEW DELHI – India Today news channel has penalised its consulting editor Rajdeep Sardesai over his on-air claim and tweet on the death of a farmer during the tractor rally on the Republic Day.

According to The Wire, the channel has taken him off air for two weeks and deducted one-month salary.

Sardesai, a leading television journalist, has not reacted publicly so far.

On January 26, the farmers protesting against the three controversial farm laws took out a tractor rally led by several farmers’ leaders including Rakesh Tikait, Yogendra Yadav, Darshan Pal and Gurnam Singh Chaduni.

Clashes broke out between police and protesters during the tractor march, and the Delhi Police claimed that more than 300 police personnel were injured. The police later booked at least 37 farmer leaders. A farmer also died at ITO during the tractor rally.

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

The police claimed that the farmer had died when his tractor overturned. Later, the Delhi Police released a video in which a tractor can be seen going out of control and overturning.

Minutes after this video was released, Sardesai withdrew his statement and tweeted, “While the farm protesters 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 protesters’ allegations don’t stand. Post mortem awaited.”

He also tweeted appreciation for the police, saying they showed “great restraint” at Red Fort and ITO.

Additionally, in his live coverage at 5:47 pm on January 26 for India Today – soon after his tweet was posted – he said, “What we do know is that while the farm protesters that we met insist that the person who died named Navneet Singh was shot at, but the police has provided us with a video that shows very clearly that the tractor overturned.”

However, several BJP leaders still demanded that an FIR be filed against Sardesai or he be fired for spreading “fake news”. BJP supporters also launched a twitter trend.


Clarion India - News, Views and Insights about Indian Muslims, Dalits, Minorities, Women and Other Marginalised and Dispossessed Communities.

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