Sambit Patra's tweet creates furore, Tweeple call him out for insensitive post

Updated: Jul 02, 2020, 18:23 IST | mid-day online correspondent | Mumbai

Sambit Patra's post led to controversy with many slamming him for his insensitivity, while few supported his actions

BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra with PM Narendra Modi. Picture/Twitter Sambit Patra
BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra with PM Narendra Modi. Picture/Twitter Sambit Patra

A heartbreaking photo of a three-year-old boy sitting beside the dead body of his grandfather went viral on social media on Wednesday. The child's grandfather was killed in front of him in a cross-fire between terrorists and army men in Sopore in North Kashmir. The boy was rescued by the army and police personnel. BJP leader and spokesperson Sambit Patra on Thursday took to Twitter and shared the picture with the caption, "Pulitzer lovers?"

From the tweet, it appears that the BJP leader was hitting out at Indian Pulitzer prize-winning journalists Dar Yasin, Mukhtar Khan, and Channi Anand, who won the award for their feature photography from Kashmir.

However, Patra's post led to controversy with many slamming him for his insensitivity, while few supported his actions.

Since being shared, the viral tweet has got nearly 50,000 likes and over 17,000 retweets. However, hundreds of netizens including politicians, journalists, and Bollywood celebrities slammed Patra for mocking the death of the person.

Commenting on Patra's tweet, author and journalist Sagarika Ghose said, "Intense human suffering and a grieving child, not the moment for nasty politics".

Demanding action against the BJP leader, Bollywood singer Vishal Dadlani wrote, "Also, can all right-thinking people with a sense of decency and empathy, please report his account?"

Here are some of the reactions to Patra's tweet:

While many believed that the BJP leader crossed the line, others came out in his support and raised pertinent questions about the death of the Syrian boy and the killing of George Floyd. While Sambit Patra responded to those who slammed him for sharing the picture, the BJP leader also shared another tweet where he sought refuge in late actor Rishi Kapoor's friendship.

Even actor Anupam Kher and politician Shazia Ilmi supported Patra's stance. Later, in an interview on national television, Patra said that he believes in the Indian Army.

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