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How the International Media Covered the Ram Rahim Singh Riots

One of the United Kingdom’s most credible newspapers had a longish report on its website which reported the facts – 30 people dead after “flamboyant” spiritual leader was convicted of raping two of his female followers.

Tushar Dhara | News18.com

Updated:August 26, 2017, 3:56 PM IST
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How the International Media Covered the Ram Rahim Singh Riots
(Image: Network18 Creatives)
Ram Rahim Singh ‘Insan’ has made international headlines, but not in the way he would have wanted. News18 looked at how international media covered the riots that broke out in Haryana after his conviction.

Ram Rahim Singh: fatal clashes follow Indian guru's rape conviction (The Guardian)

One of the United Kingdom’s most credible newspapers had a longish report on its website which reported the facts – 30 people dead after “flamboyant” spiritual leader was convicted of raping two of his female followers. The report called Ram Rahim “one of the most powerful men in India” and talks about his colourful personality – “In 2014 he starred – encrusted in rhinestones – in the first of two hagiographic films about his life, in which he was credited for 30 roles including director, producer and choreographer.”

Guardian baba

Indian guru convicted of rape revered by millions (The Washington Post)

The Iconic American newspaper picked up a wire copy that started with, “The millions of followers of the flashy Indian guru consider him the embodiment of God on Earth.” The report mentioned the fondness of Ram Rahim Singh for bling: “But the bling-loving leader — he’s fond of red leather jackets, bejeweled hats, bicep-baring T-shirts — has another love: Cinema.” The report also quoted from his Twitter bio, “His Twitter biography describes him thus: Spiritual Saint/Philanthropist/Versatile Singer/Allrounder Sportsperson/Film Director/Actor/Art Director/Music Director/ Writer/Lyricist/Autobiographer/DOP.”

WaPo baba

Violent Protests in India Turn Deadly After Guru’s Rape Conviction (The New York Times)

America’s newspaper of record had a bylined copy with video embeds and pictures describing the rioting and violence in Panchkula. The web copy also mentioned Ram Rahim Singh’s eccentric personality: “Mr. Singh’s eccentric personality has attracted a cultlike following. The self-styled “godman” is known for a flashy life and flamboyant dress. He often drives an oversized motorcycle and has made several films and music albums.”

NYT baba

Riots Erupt in India After Guru’s Rape Conviction (The Wall Street Journal)

WSJ baba

Violence erupts in India after guru is convicted of rape (Financial Times)

FT baba

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| Edited by: Huma Tabassum
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